5 victims in church shooting in stable condition; suspect charged with murder

Emanuel Kidega Samson is charged with murder. (Photo: Metro Nashville Police Department)

As soon as police released the identity of suspected church shooter Emanuel Samson, the News 4 I-Team began looking at his past.

Samson has been charged with murder in connection with the shooting death of Melanie Crow, 38, of Smyrna, outside Burnette Chapel Church of Christ in Antioch.

He will face additional charges after shooting six other people, including the church’s minister, Joey Spann, and pistol-whipping another person.

The I-Team uncovered yet another interaction between Samson and police, which is documented in incident reports.

Records show while investigating another crime, Smyrna police officers found a bullet hole in Samson’s home, fired from his own gun. Only this time, Samson said he was the victim.

The Smyrna Police report states Samson dialed 911 in October 2015, saying his home had been burglarized.

Officers never arrested a suspect but they did make several observations about Samson.

Samson found his door kicked in after returning from the gym that morning, according to the narrative. He told police his roommate’s TV and Xbox were missing.

When Samson’s roommate, Robert Adams, came home, he reported a box of 9mm rounds was also gone.

Adams claimed his 9mm pistol, along with cash, was also stolen several months ago but he never called police.

However someone else did have a gun in the home.

While searching the residence, officers found a hole in the wall from what appeared to be a shotgun blast. Police said the shotgun belonged to Samson, who showed them the firearm under his bed.

The I-Team spoke to Adams over the phone. He blamed both break-ins on a former friend but said due to a lack of evidence, no one was ever charged.

Adams described the hole in the wall as a “freak accident,” stating neither he nor Samson was responsible. Instead Adams said an unnamed friend pulled the trigger because he thought it was unloaded.

Police never recovered the stolen items but in the initial report, an officer did make a unique observation without explanation.

The records state upon leaving, an officer noticed the back seats of Samson’s SUV were in the down position “as to make room for more cargo.”

Smyrna Police spokesman Sgt. Bobby Gibson said he could not elaborate on the statement Tuesday, saying the officer on duty for that incident was out of the office.

Samson’s only other encounter with Smyrna PD was a traffic stop in 2016, when police let him go with a warning.

In Murfreesboro, Samson had three separate interactions with police just this year alone. Last June Samson threatened to take his own life.

Police also responded to two calls about domestic disturbances between Samson and his girlfriend.

Samson was not arrested in any of those incidents.

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