Bellevue car burglar turned murderer: new details

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Just before 1:30 AM this morning, Erik Helffenstein, 45, was shot and killed as he chased two individuals that were burglarizing his vehicle outside his home.

Helffenstein’s wife noticed that two people wearing hoodies were breaking into one of their vehicles shortly before 1:30 AM Monday morning. Erick Helffenstein went outside to confront the burglars, however the two individuals got into a black SUV and fled. the scene. Helffenstein then got into his Nissan Pathfinder and pursued them, according to police.

Detectives believe that one of the occupants opened fire onto Helffenstein’s Pathfinder on Highway 100, with several rounds striking the vehicle.

Helffenstein’s wife called 911, and relayed that her husband had gone after the auto burglars and did not have his cellphone with him. Officers canvassed the area, and found his vehicle off the roadway in the 7800 block of Highway 100. Officer McGinnis immediately saw that Helffenstein had been shot and began CPR, however he was pronounced dead on the scene by Nashville Fire Department a short time later.

Metro Police are asking people in the area to check their doorbell cameras, and report anything to Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.

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