Family Of Trucker Shot To Death Along Interstate In Nashville Demand Shooter Face Charges
Nashville, Tennessee – The family of 53-year-old truck driver, Christopher Jankowski of Christiana, Tennessee, who was shot and killed during a roadside confrontation Friday night along I-65 South in Nashville, are speaking out and demanding charges be filed against the man who pulled the trigger.
28-year-old Eric Nichols of Columbia, Tennessee, told police following the shooting that he shot Jankowski in an act of self-defense. Nichols says Jankowski became enraged at him as he attempted to merge onto the interstate from the Harding Place ramp in his white Ford Fusion sedan during heavy rush hour traffic.
Nichols says the dispute continued while both men were in their vehicles until they each pulled onto the road’s shoulder near exit 78: State Route-255 and Harding Place. The two men then became engaged in an “altercation.”
Nichols then claims as the confrontation became physical between the two men the gun he was carrying in his waistband fell out and onto the ground. Nichols claims Jankowski reached for the weapon and Nichols was left with no choice. He says he picked it up and fired one round striking and killing Jankowski.
Jankowski Family Is Not Buying Nichols’ Story
Jankowski’s daughters, Ashlee and Nicole, are speaking out publicly and questioning Nichols’ account of what happened that night. They both spoke to Fox17 Nashville and said their dad was a gentle man and they aren’t buying Nichols’ story. “He got out of that car with a gun, he knew what he was going to do,” Ashlee said. “I just can’t believe it, why did he have to kill him? Why did he have to take a gun and kill my dad,” Nicole said through tears.
The women said their dad, who has been a trucker for decades, was deeply loved by his children and 12 grandchildren. “My dad was my whole heart, he was our pop, he did everything for us, he loved us,” Ashlee said. “Now he’s gone over some senseless act that could have been avoided.”
Will Charges Be Filed?
Both women say they want charges filed against Nichols. Police say the incident is still very much under investigation and no decision about whether to file charges has been made. Some have questioned whether traffic cameras may have caught the incident or if a passerby motorist may have captured the altercation. We do not yet have that information.
However, the Jankowski family wants Nichols’ to pay for shooting their dad. “I have nothing to say, you took our pop away he was my backbone he was the foundation to my family,” Ashlee said of Nichols.
The family is currently making funeral arrangements for Christopher. A Go Fund Me Page has been started to help with funeral costs.
Transportation Nation Network will continue to follow this story and bring you the latest. Watch Fox17 Nashville’s report below for more.
Featured image courtesy of the Jankowski family.