Police have linked a recovered stolen car to a Target parking lot shooting that injured two Vanderbilt University football players and at least two gas station robberies.
Officials with Metro Nashville Police said the red Toyota Corolla was recovered early Wednesday morning at America’s Best Value Inn on Rivergate Parkway in Goodlettsville.
The car was stolen Monday night during a shooting that injured two Vanderbilt University football players at a Target on White Bridge Pike.
Police said the shooting happened during an "ill-conceived plan to recover a stolen cell phone."
Vandy football player Donaven Tennyson, age 19, put his phone up for sale online and said it was stolen when he met the potential buyer.
Later that night, Tennyson saw another post online for a phone offered for sale.
He recognized the phone as the one that had been stolen and created a fake account to buy the phone from the suspect, arranging to meet at the Target parking lot.
Tennyson and two other football players, 18-year-old O-Montae Daley and 18-year-old Frank Coppet, drove to the parking lot for the exchange.
The three teens pulled up next to the seller's grey Buick sedan. Police said Coppet got out of the car, brandishing a pellet pistol.
A suspect then got out of the Buick with a handgun and shot at the teens. Another suspect in the vehicle discharged a shotgun. The suspects then fled the scene, driving both the Buick and Daley's Toyota Corolla.
The latter vehicle has been linked to two, armed gas station robberies.
The first incident happened around 2 a.m. Tuesday at a Z-Mart on Gallatin Pike. Officials with Metro Nashville Police said two men walked into the store, threatened the clerk and took off with cash.
About an hour later, investigators have reason to believe those same men robbed the T-Fuel gas station on Eatons Creek Road in Joelton, where they got away with cash, lighters, cigarillos and lottery tickets before speeding off in a red Toyota Corolla with a missing right front hubcap.
Police said they found evidence in the recovered car that linked them to the robberies.
Metro Police were searching for the suspects. They said the Buick was described as a four-door sedan with dark tinted windows. It also had visible damage to both passenger doors.
Anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers at 74-CRIME.
Vanderbilt Football Players Injured In Target Shooting
2 Gunmen Sought In Nashville Gas Station Robberies