Two W.Va. State Police Troopers and Deputy Shot; One Dead

CLAY COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ, WYMT) -- A West Virginia State Police Trooper has been shot and killed in the line of duty, and two other law enforcement officers and a tow truck driver have been hurt.

The shootings were reported just before 8:30 p.m. Tuesday near a park and ride along Interstate 79 in Clay County.

Sgt. Michael Baylous with the West Virginia State Police says the shootings happened after two state troopers pulled over the suspect for reckless driving.

When the suspect was arrested and put in the back of a cruiser, the man grabbed a gun and shot both troopers, according to Sgt. Baylous.

Investigators say the suspect got out of the cruiser and then shot a tow truck driver who was called to the scene to pick up the suspect's car.

The tow truck driver and the officer that survived were flown to CAMC General in Charleston with critical injuries.

Several police agencies, as well as SWAT Teams, were called to the scene to help search for the suspect.

Baylous says the suspect was located about 9:30 p.m. hiding in the area when a Roane County Sheriff's Deputy caught up with him.

Police say the suspect and deputy got into a shootout. The deputy was shot. He was taken to the hospital, but is expected to be OK.

During this shootout, the suspect was shot and killed.

It's still unclear how the suspect was able to get a gun.

Family, friends and officers from all over the state are now gathered at CAMC General. Dozens of cruisers are now lining the streets around the hospital in Charleston.

Gov. Earl Tomblin has also arrived at the hospital.

Earlier Tuesday night, Kanawha County Metro 911 reported that I-79 was closed at the Wallback exit. It has since reopened.

Statement from Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin
"Early this evening several police officers were shot in the line of duty in Clay County. As we wait to hear from law enforcement and medical personnel on the conditions of these officers, Joanne and I hold them and their families in our prayers, and ask all West Virginians to join us. This tragedy reminds us of the sacrifices that our law enforcement officers make every day to keep us safe."

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