A Grammy-winning recording engineer who has worked in the Nashville music scene for 35 years, Mark Capps, was shot and killed by police in Nashville Thursday afternoon. A spokesperson said he was killed by a SWAT team member after he brandished a gun in his doorway, as police responded to an incident in which Capps had allegedly held his wife and adult stepdaughter captive at gunpoint.
Multiple news outlets in Nashville reported the death, which sent shock waves through parts of the local music community. He was part of a family that is well-known in Nashville circles, as his father was legendary session player, Grand Ole Opry guitarist and Musicians Hall of Fame member Jimmy Capps, who died in 2020. The fatal shooting of Capps comes just two days after his brother died, as indicated on his social media.
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Capps, 54, was wanted on aggravated assault and aggravated kidnapping warrants at the time of his death. Metro Police spokesman Don Aaron told reporters that Capps brought his 60-year-old wife and 23-year-old stepdaughter into their family room at gunpoint at approximately 3 a.m. and “told them if they called someone, he would kill them. They were extremely frightened by him and his actions toward them in not letting them leave.” After he fell asleep around dawn, police said, the two women escaped and went to the Hermitage precinct to file a report. The SWAT team confronted and killed him shortly after the warrants were issued at 1:55 p.m.
A discography on Capps’ website indicates that, since 1987, he has worked with country and gospel artists including Alabama, the Dixie Chicks, Neil Diamond, Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Brooks & Dunn, Barry Manilow, Chris Young, Aaron Tippin, Conway Twitty, Joe Diffie, the Oak Ridge Boys, Big & Rich, the Gaither Vocal Band, John Michael Montgomery, Kenny Rogers, Donna Summer, the Mavericks, Anita Cochran, Kenny Loggins, Olivia Newton-John and the Isaacs, among others.
The Recording Academy’s website shows he picked up a Grammy for best polka album four years in a row, from 2005 through 2008, working with the group Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra.
“Just after the arrest warrants were issued, SWAT was preparing in the event he barricaded himself inside,” Aaron told reporters, per News Channel 5. “He came to the door with a gun in hand. At that point, he was fatally shot. We have since learned there were cameras monitoring the outside of the home. He may have well seen them outside the residence. They were in SWAT gear and clearly marked to him as members of the police department.”
Police said that body cam footage was being reviewed and would be released later.
Capps had just lost his brother two days prior to the incident that resulted in his own death. In Capps’ last public Facebook post, dated yesterday, he wrote, “No words. RIP Jeffery Allen Capps, Dec 31, 1967 – Jan 03, 2023,” alongside an undated photograph of himself and his brother standing in front of their father’s grave.
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