North Carolina Officer Killed Intervening In Gas Station Theft

Tragedy struck a small town near Greensboro, North Carolina, on Saturday when an off-duty veteran police officer was shot and killed. Sergeant Philip Dale Nix was attempting to intervene in a theft from a Sheetz gas station when he was fatally shot.

The violent encounter happened shortly after 4 p.m. in Colfax, which is roughly 18 miles northwest of Greensboro.

Nix realized a theft was in progress and tried to stop the group. He received immediate emergency care from another off-duty officer and a paramedic before being rushed to the hospital, but it was too late.

Two 18-year-olds, Jamere Justice Foster and Z’Quirah Le’Pearce Blackwell, along with 28-year-old John Walter Morrison are charged in Nix’s death.

ABC11 reported that Foster faces a first-degree murder charge, while Blackwell and Morrison are charged with accessory after the fact to first-degree murder.

Foster and Morrison were further charged with larceny and conspiracy to commit larceny. Both are being held without bond while Blackwell’s is $500,000.

Warrants allege Blackwell assisted in Foster’s escape attempt. The documents state Blackwell told Foster that “they needed to get out of there because he just killed a cop.”

Investigators believe the two worked to sell their stolen items and discussed destroying evidence. They wanted to rid themselves of the firearm allegedly used in the killing and the tag on the vehicle they left the scene in.

Greensboro Mayor Nancy Vaughn responded to the tragedy. She told local media, “I am angry, and I am sad. I think those are feelings that are felt throughout this department and throughout this city.”

Nix served the department for over two decades in several positions. He was formerly a Criminal Investigations Division Detective, Patrol Corporal, Patrol Sergeant, and most recently the Supervisor of the Family Victims Unit.

Officials noted he was a Team Leader for the Peer Support Team for more than 12 years and currently served as Assistant Team Leader of the GPD Honor Guard.

Nix is further described as a father, husband and son.