A two-week police search across several states ended Tuesday with the arrest of Darien Dru Thadychith, the man suspected in the killing of CATS bus driver Ethan Rivera, who was shot during a case of suspected road rage.
“We pray that this apprehension brings some solace and some peace to the Rivera family this morning,” Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Joel McNelly said at a news conference Tuesday.
Thadychith, 21, was arrested in Shawnee, Kansas — some 970 miles from Charlotte. The authorities said the manhunt had gone through North Carolina, Tennessee, Colorado, and Kansas.
Thadychith was arrested by officers of the Shawnee police department and will be extradited back to Charlotte, McNelly said.
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Shortly after 9:30 p.m. on Feb. 11, CMPD officers responded to an assault with a deadly weapon call for service in the 500 block of W. Trade Street and found Rivera, 41, with a gunshot wound. He died the next day at a Charlotte hospital.
Police said that the shooting occurred during a road rage altercation between Rivera and Thadychith.
Thadychith was charged with murder and shooting into an occupied property.
Charlotte Area Transit System CEO John Lewis said the arrest was a “bright ray of sunshine” for the CATS family.
“We are one step closer to justice for Ethan Rivera,” Lewis said. “We are finally bringing this individual to justice.”
Since the shooting, some CATS drivers have expressed concerns about safety measures aboard their buses. Four passengers were riding Rivera’s bus at the time of the shooting; none was injured.
Lewis said CATS will partner with CMPD and Allied Universal security company to be present onboard transits and at bus stops.
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call 704-432-TIPS to speak with a homicide detective, or call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.