Drivers caught in the crossfire during shootout on busy Memphis road

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis man is facing serious charges after police say he was involved in a shootout on a busy stretch of road.

Natarius Hewlett, 18, is being held at the Shelby County Jail on a $75,000 bond. 

The incident, which put innocent drivers in harm’s way, happened on May 21 around 7 pm near South Third Street and Mitchell.

Demetria Neal was driving in the area when police say people in a white sedan and a Ford Mustang started shooting at each other. A stray bullet hit Neal’s car but, thankfully, she wasn’t hurt.

“I was terrified,” she said, “Thank God it didn’t hit me.”

It was a close call for Michael Proctor too. He says he was heading home from work when another bullet came through his car. He says he’s grateful it only grazed his arm.

“They could have killed me with senseless shooting, shooting through my car,” he said.

Police say the shootout also led to a crash when the Mustang plowed into another vehicle where a woman and her children were inside. Thankfully, they’re okay.

Investigators say two men ran from the Mustang and claim officers eventually found Natarius Hewlett in a nearby neighborhood. They say he was arrested on gun and drug charges but, at that time, officers couldn’t connect him to the shootout on South Third.

After an initial investigation, police determined Hewlett was involved. They say he was arrested on July 1st after trying to run from officers at his home on Kansas Street. He was caught in the backyard and taken into custody. He’s charged with a number of things including reckless endangerment and evading arrest. 

“It’s just ridiculous,” Neal said, “Innocent bystanders just for nothing just because they wanna have a shootout in the middle of Third Street. That don’t make no sense. People, they need to think how many lives you could have took.”

Police say Hewlett eventually admitted to being in the shootout but investigators haven’t said if anyone else who fired shots has been arrested.

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