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Authorities still searching for armed man considered dangerous

By Joe Fry, Assignment Editor/Photographer, jfry@ktxs.com
Published On: Feb 18 2014 09:42:16 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 20 2014 08:52:12 AM CST
ABILENE, Texas -

Police continue to be in pursuit of a man – now identified as 29-year-old Kenneth William Shults – who was involved in a two-county, high-speed car chase Tuesday night.

According to the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office, Shults is to be considered armed, dangerous and possibly suicidal.

Shults is a convicted felon and is currently wanted by Taylor County for aggravated robbery and aggravated assault of a public servant with a deadly weapon. His bonds total $150,000.

Law enforcement have been trying to track down and arrest Shults since Sunday.

Earlier Wednesday, at 8:40 a.m., the Department of Public Safety and Taylor County Sheriff's Office entered the Hamby Volunteer Fire Department -- with automatic weapons drawn -- in search of Shults.

Minutes later, authorities said a gold Malibu that Shults allegedly stole, had been located in the vicinity of the Hamby fire department. The search then continued to a number of nearby residences.

Shults, which scanner traffic indicated has disguised his face with military-style makeup, still hasn't been caught.

Early Sunday, Shults is “believed to have robbed a patron of a north Abilene game room, taking the man’s pickup and cell phone at gunpoint, when the victim could not come up with any money,” a sheriff’s office news release said.

That robbery, authorities said, took place north of Abilene in Taylor County. The victim reportedly escaped by jumping a fence and running into a field.

The pursuit led to a convenience store at 4600 Pine Street, where Shults abandoned the victim’s vehicle and sped away on a Harley Davidson motorcycle. It struck the open door of a patrol unit.

“In addition, a deputy narrowly escaped injury by jumping from the path of the motorcycle,” the release said. “After a lengthy chase, Shults escaped on the motorcycle in southern Shackleford County.”

At about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, the sheriff’s office received information that Shults was hiding in a house in southwest Abilene.  

“Deputies and narcotics agents established surveillance on the house,” the release said. “Before the information could be confirmed, Shults jumped into a red Chevrolet pickup, driven by an unidentified man, and sped away.”

This chase led deputies to a rural area of southern Shackelford County, where the driver wrecked the pickup, and two occupants ran into the brush in a sparsely populated area.  The driver’s identity has not yet been confirmed.

The Abilene Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety, Callahan County Sheriff’s Department, and Taylor County Constable’s Office joined in the search.

“Neither man was located – and the search was suspended until daylight (Wednesday),” the release said.

Authorities were told Shults was responsible for another home invasion robbery – in southern Shackleford County – in which he broke into a relative’s home and took her car at gunpoint. 

“The public is asked to remain alert and cautious until Shults is apprehended,” the release said. “ He should be considered armed, dangerous, and possibly suicidal.”

If seen, please contact the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office – immediately.  Anyone with information can also contact Crime Stoppers at 325-676-8477 and remain anonymous. 

Previous story:

Authorities are currently in pursuit of at least one of possibly two people who led them on a high-speed chase through two counties Tuesday night.

The suggest the man left in a 2012 gold-colored Chevy Malibu around 8 a.m.

At 8:40 a.m., the Department of Public Safety and Taylor County Sheriff's Office entered the Hamby Volunteer Fire Department -- with automatic weapons drawn -- in search of the suspect.

Minutes later, authorities said the gold Malibu had been located in the vicinity of the Hamby fire department.

The search then continued to a number of nearby residences.

The man, which scanner traffic indicated has disguised his face with military-style makeup, still hasn't been caught.

The original chase began right around 8 p.m. Tuesday south of Abilene, traveled up Highway 83/84 to Loop 322 and then continued north into Shackelford County.

Taylor County Sheriff Ricky Bishop said his deputes chased a red Chevy pickup and along the way they picked up support from Abilene police and Department of Public Safety troopers.

About 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, the vehicles tires caught fire and it wrecked off of a county road in Shackelford County.  The suspects fled on foot.

Authorities say they found two handguns in the vehicle and now a K-9 unit is involved in the search.  They're also had help from a DPS helicopter, along with officers from Shackelford County and Callahan County police departments.

Officers have closed off several roads to the area.  One of the vehicle's occupants was a person of interest in an aggravated robbery on Sunday.

Bishop adds the two men should be considered armed and dangerous.

The search will continue this morning. No identities or descriptions on either suspect have been released