Elks Lodge shooting suspect considered armed and dangerous

kward1@herald-leader.comAugust 14, 2013 

A man with a history of domestic violence wanted in a Lexington shooting is on the run from police, and should be considered armed and dangerous, police said.

Anyone who sees Wendell Dixon should call 911 immediately, said Lexington police spokeswoman Sherelle Roberts.

Dixon is accused of shooting a woman at the Swahili Elks Lodge Friday. Police documents indicate that the woman is April Ballentine, 43, whom court records identified as a girlfriend of Dixon's.

Roberts said Wednesday that police were taking measures to find Dixon, but Roberts said she could not disclose specifics. The Fayette County sheriff's office included Dixon in this week's Lexington's Most Wanted, a joint service offered by the Lexington Herald-Leader and the sheriff's office.

Witnesses told police that Dixon had an argument with a woman inside the Swahili Elks Lodge at 1203 Versailles Road. They said Dixon shot her multiple times and then fled in a white Chevy Trailblazer.

The woman was taken to University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital. Police did not release her name, but arrest records say Ballentine "was intentionally shot by a known subject causing serious physcial injury" at 1203 Versailles Road on Friday. No information about her condition was available.

Dixon's family members in Lexington were the last to see him, Roberts said. Shortly after the incident "he went to his home, had a very frantic verbal exchange with his family and then fled," she said.

Roberts did not say whether Dixon might have had connections or family outside Kentucky. Dixon appears to have strong ties to this area.

Court records indicate that Dixon also faced domestic violence allegations in 1993, 1996 and 2002.

The most recent came June 4, when police charged Dixon with fourth-degree assault on his 50th birthday.

Ballentine said that she had told Dixon, her boyfriend with whom she lived, that "she wanted to break up," court records show.

As Ballentine opened the front door, "he pushed her out of the house down the porch steps into the grass." A police report says she had an injury on her forehead and complained of pain in her right leg. Dixon was arrested at 11:20 p.m. at the home the couple shared on Forest Spring Court.

Court records show that Dixon pleaded not guilty and was released on $1,000 bond June 5. He was ordered to have no contact with Ballentine. A hearing in that case had been scheduled for Monday.

Karla Ward: (859) 231-3314. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety

Lexington Herald-Leader is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service