Teenage pizza delivery driver shot at 7 times after driveway mix-up

The suspect said he thought the 18-year-old delivery driver — who was in a Domino's Pizza uniform — was attempting to break into his car.
Domino's Pizza boxes
Posted at 8:21 AM, May 01, 2024

A Domino's Pizza delivery driver in Tennessee was out for only the second time when he was shot at seven times after he pulled into the wrong driveway.

Caiden Wheeler, an 18-year-old high school student, was delivering a pizza to a house around 8 p.m. in Ashland City when gunfire erupted.

"I was literally about to get killed right there," Wheeler said. "It is attempted murder in my opinion."

After he dropped the pizza at the correct house and got back in his truck, police say the suspect, Ryan Babcock, 32, shot at him. Babcock used a handgun to shoot the driver's side below the gas tank, the wheel on the driver's side and right above the driver's side window.

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Police recovered seven shell casings at the scene. Babcock told police what he could see on his Ring camera made him think someone was breaking into his car, so he went outside and started shooting.

"I understand keeping your firearm, trying to be protective ... protect your family, but I don't think you should automatically shoot at someone because they pulled in," Wheeler said. "I don't think that's right."

While Wheeler's car wasn't marked, he was in a Domino's uniform and got out of the car holding a pizza delivery bag.

"I do believe there is — if you have reasonable cause — sometimes you got to do what you got to do, but in certain cases like this, I don't think that was a reasonable cause and therefore I don't agree with it," Wheeler said.

Wheeler and his family said they think the charge should be attempted homicide rather than aggravated assault.

According to Ashland City Police, the district attorney set the charge.

Babcock is out on bond. His arraignment is set for June 12.

This story was originally published by Hannah McDonald at Scripps News Nashville.