Friend of murder suspect says Steven Wiggins made ominous statement before killing deputy
NASHVILLE, Tenn. —
The man who launched a massive manhunt in Tennessee and is accused of killing a deputy allegedly stated his ominous intentions just days before the shooting.
Steven Wiggins, accused of killing Dickson County Sgt. Daniel Baker, was arrested on Friday after a three day manhunt. His girlfriend, Erika Castro-Miles, was also arrested on the day of the shooting. According to police, Castro-Miles was present during the murder which police records call "premeditated."
The premeditation is something a woman claiming to be longtime, close friend of Erika's says was expressed to her in the days leading up to the shooting.
The woman does not want to be identified by FOX 17 News by name. After making a statement on social media about their relationship, the woman contacted FOX 17 News and provided personal photos, social media connections, and details of she and Erika's relationship which were validated by one of Erika's family members.
The Kentucky resident says she can't believe the charges against her friend, saying "I would have never expected anything like this from her."
However, she believes drugs played a role in putting her friend in this position.
The woman claims on Tuesday of last week, Erika and Wiggins -who she only knew as "Wiggy," stopped by her home. The couple was staying at a local hotel but would come to the woman's house during their three-day stay. The woman says Erika expressed to her she had "never felt like this about another man before" and despite Wiggins’ history, she would stay with him.
"I've watched them fight and anytime they would argue Wiggins would say to her 'I'll just kill you, I don't care,'" the woman claims. "I mean who speaks like that to someone they're in a relationship with? I warned her about him but I don't think it was about him, I think it was about the drugs."
The woman claims to have also seen Wiggins with a needle in his arm inside his car during their visit and suspects her friend Erika was also using narcotics. The woman says before the couple left on Thursday of last week, Wiggins expressed he was skipping a court appearance and there would be warrants for his arrest. According to the friend, Wiggins and Erika said the plan was to drive back to Dickson, empty Erika's camper and then go to another county to avoid arrest.
Wiggins also allegedly made an ominous statement in front of Erika's friend.
"He said if he gets pulled over and can't kill himself first, then he would kill the cop," the friend stated. The friend says she became upset and walked away. She says Wiggins told her fiancé, also present during the comment, to let her know "he wouldn't do anything in front of Erika cause she has kids and would make sure she got out of the car."
According to police records, that is not how things took place and now Erika Castro-Miles faces charges of first degree murder and the District Attorney will be seeking the death penalty against both suspects.
The friend says she doesn't know what Erika's involvement is with the shooting but blames Wiggins.
"I hope he f*****g rots. Not only did he destroy her, he destroyed her kids," the woman says.
As for her friend, the woman says it's painful Erika did not listen to her warnings.
"For her not to have listened to me about this guy is destroying me. I just pray for her."