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Charlotte Area News

Ambush Suspect Had A Long, Fraught History With The Law

Mecklenburg County Sheriff

A lengthy criminal history is emerging for the man accused of killing his girlfriend and later opening fire on police officers outside CMPD headquarters Thursday night.

Jonathan Bennett, 23, had twice been imprisoned for separate cases of breaking and entering, and was involved in nearly a dozen police reports dating back to 2010.

Most recently, in March of 2017, police were twice called to a home on Carlyle Drive by Bennett's girlfriend, a women named Brittany White, 24, with whom Bennett would later have a child.

The first time, White called police around 9:30 a.m. on March 24 to report Bennett for allegedly stealing $100 worth of prescription pills, along with clothes, medical paperwork, a car seat, and a house key.

Four days later, she called police again, around 2:30 in the morning, and told police Bennett had physically assaulted her, pushing her to the ground while grabbing her by the neck and hair. He was arrested and placed in jail.

The incident followed a litany of alleged offenses over the last seven years that span a wide range, including larceny, burglary, breaking and entering, possession of a firearm by a felon, and possession of marijuana and clear corner baggies.

Bennett's earliest arrest as an adult came when he was 16 years old and attending Right Choice Alternative School in Charlotte. In Feb. 2010, Bennett was called into the principal's office to receive a suspension. According to a police report, Bennett "became angry and started shouting profanity in the front office area." He was asked to leave, but refused, leading him to be placed under arrest.

Later, he began attending West Charlotte High School, where he was arrested in Nov. 2010 for punching another student.

Over the next three years, Bennett was twice convicted of felony breaking and entering, serving short prison sentences in 2012 and 2013. Each time he was released after roughly a month.

It's unclear whether he had children other than his two-month-old daughter, who was missing when police showed up to the home on Carlyle Drive for a third time on Thursday. The daughter, born in October and named Journei Bennett, was later located safe and unharmed.  Television station WSOC reported she was dropped off with Bennett's grandmother at a home in north Charlotte.