Police identify suspect wanted in Purple Haze shooting that injured 9 people

Club will stay closed at least 2 weeks; police say 4 people were shot

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Memphis Police Department has identified a suspect in the Purple Haze shooting early Monday morning.

Police said 32-year-old Jeremy Beck has been identified as the shooter, and a warrant has been issued for his arrest. He is charged with four counts of aggravated assault and one count of reckless endangerment.

Jeremy Beck, 32, is wanted in the Purple Haze shooting that injured 9 people.
Jeremy Beck, 32, is wanted in the Purple Haze shooting that injured 9 people. (Memphis Police Department)

Meanwhile, Purple Haze will close at least two weeks after several people were injured in the shooting.

The shooting happened Monday around 3:30 a.m.

Police say four people were shot, with one person in critical condition. A total of nine people were injured; it’s unclear how the rest of the injuries happened.

“When we grew up they had fist fights and maybe a knife was pulled, but now everything is answered with a gun and it’s scary,” Debbie Powell said.

The nightclub released the following statement about the shooting:

“We are cooperating fully in the ongoing investigation into this unfortunate incident. We offer our deepest sympathies and prayers for quick healing to those that were injured, including one of our very own security officers, in the altercation that happened at Purple Haze Nightclub early this morning. While measures were in place to detect the possession of firearms as patrons enter the club we are unsure at this time how those that discharged firearms were able to do so despite our strict security procedures. As the safety and security of our guests and employees are our utmost concern we are temporarily closing for two weeks to review operations.”

This isn’t the first time Purple Haze has been involved in a major incident.

In March, 41-year-old Choosey Parker was shot and killed after she and her boyfriend left the club.

Teresa Williams has lived in Memphis for more than 30 years and said it’s sad people can’t enjoy themselves.

“Be a man or woman about it and walk away and let it be,” Williams said.

Canadian tourist Bernie Chaput said the violence won’t stop him from visiting the Bluff City.

“I’m not going to let some idiot damper my vacation or things that I want to do in life so no, I’d come back for sure,” Chaput said.

Memphis City Councilman Berlin Boyd said this type of violence is what he wants to stop.

“Right now I’m kind of disturbed that every time we look up there’s something going on at Purple Haze,” Boyd said. “Hopefully the DA’s office will take a stance and say, ‘no more. Our stand is we’re going to close this place as a public nuisance.'”

The District Attorney’s office issued a statement that said, in part:

“We don’t comment on when or where a nuisance investigation may be in progress, but this club’s decision to voluntarily close for two weeks to assess its operation is an encouraging sign. I would strongly encourage them to take some meaningful steps to increase safety for their customers and for surrounding businesses.”

Steve Powell is one Memphis citizen who isn’t sure what can be done about the violence.

" I don’t know what the answer is. How do you stop people that don’t care and that have no feeling toward life?" Powell asked.

Powell and his wife Debbie said it’s this kind of violence that will scare people away from the city.

" Memphis is full of history," Debbie Powell said. “It’s a beautiful town and I just hate all the violence though. Seems like that was increased over the years.”

Boyd said a change in policing could help deter these things from happening as well. He thinks the only way Purple Haze should get a chance to stay is if the business makes some serious changes.

Copyright 2018 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved.