Man Dead Following Standoff With Police

By David Hedges, Publisher
Times Record-Roane County Reporter

Services took place Monday for a Spencer man shot by State Police.

Brian Keith Batten, 33, was fatally wounded in an incident near his mother's home Thursday afternoon.

Sgt. J.E. Elmore Jr., commander of the Spencer detachment, said State Police shot Batten after he pointed his gun at officers.

The shooting is the subject of an internal investigation, Elmore said.

The standoff with police began sometime after 1 p.m. Thursday when Batten's mother, Linda Miller, reported that her son had tried to take her vehicle.

Two Roane Sheriff's Dept. deputies and a DNR officer were the first to respond to Miller's mobile home at 2709 Arnoldsburg Road.

Elmore said Batten had been staying with his mother and wanted to use her vehicle to go hunting. He said Batten had a .20 gauge shotgun in his possession.

When officers arrived Elmore said Batten was on top of a rock embankment behind his mother's mobile home making threats to police and members of the public. Police said Batten fired his gun at least twice.

Batten was a convicted felon after pleading no contest to a charge of unlawful wounding in 2002. The charge alleged he struck another man with a tire tool outside the Outskirts bar in the fall of 2001. He was sentenced to 1-to-5 years in prison and ordered to make $98 in restitution to the victim.

Elmore said negotiations with Batten went on throughout the afternoon.

After Batten moved deeper into the woods behind his mother's residence, officers were able to speak with him on a cell phone. During the negotiations State Police brought in a helicopter and the State Police Special Response Team.

Roane Sheriff Todd Cole is one of the officers who spoke to Batten, first face-to-face and later on the phone.

"I think he was having some emotional problems," Cole said. "He talked about a lot about things that were bothering him."

Some of the officers left the standoff to obtain a warrant charging Batten with being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

The warrant, obtained by DNR officer John Apgar, said Batten had told police he would not leave the area above his mother's home and that "if any officers came on the hill to get him he would shoot them."

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