Virginia cop died on his 29th birthday hours after being shot during a welfare check

Virginia soldier died on his 29th birthday after he was shot during a welfare check – a search operation that began with the arrest of the suspect 40 miles away

  • Big Stone Gap Police Department officer Michael Chandler died on Saturday
  • He was shot during the welfare check at around 4 am on Saturday.
  • Chandler was found by the sheriff’s deputy inside a ditch near the driveway of a house
  • He was taken to the hospital and declared dead on Saturday evening
  • Shooting took place on the same day that Chandler turned 29
  • After the shooting, state, local and federal agencies began a search for the suspect.
  • A 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap was detained 40 miles away
  • Suspect caught without incident outside motel in Kingsport, Tennessee










a Virginia The police officer died hours after being shot during a welfare check early Saturday morning on his 29th birthday.

Big Stone Gap Police Department officer Michael Chandler was conducting a welfare check at about 4 a.m. Saturday when he encountered at least one person in an abandoned home.

“When officers arrived at the Chandler residence, they were confronted by at least one person,” Virginia State Police Corinne Geller said. WTVR TV,

‘Officer Chandler was shot during this encounter.’

A deputy from the Wise County Sheriff’s Office found Chandler lying unconscious in a ditch along the driveway to the home.

Chandler was then taken to Johnson City Medical Center in Tennessee with life-threatening injuries. He died hours later.

Big Stone Gap (Virginia) Police Department officer Michael Chandler was conducting a welfare check at about 4 a.m. Saturday when he encountered at least one person in an abandoned home.

State and federal agencies then launched a search operation for the suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap who was arrested at a motel about 40 miles across the border in Tennessee.  According to WCYB-TV, the suspect was apprehended after being located at the Travel Inn in Kingsport (above).

State and federal agencies then launched a search operation for the suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap who was arrested at a motel about 40 miles across the border in Tennessee. According to WCYB-TV, the suspect was apprehended after being located at the Travel Inn in Kingsport (above).

The image above shows the motel room that was raided by the officers who arrested the suspect.

The image above shows the motel room that was raided by the officers who arrested the suspect.

He is being held on probation violations of South Carolina and Wise County, Virginia

He is being held on probation violations of South Carolina and Wise County, Virginia

State and federal agencies then launched a search operation for the suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap who was arrested at a motel about 40 miles across the border in Tennessee.

According to WCYB-TVThe suspect was apprehended after being located at the Travel Inn in Kingsport.

The suspect, whose name has not been released, was arrested by Kingsport Police without incident. He is being held on probation violations from South Carolina and Wise County, Virginia.

The Big Stone Gap Police Department paid tribute to Chandler.

“Their fight for survival today was truly miraculous,” said Big Stone Gap Police Chief Stephen Hamm.

State and federal agencies then launched a search operation for the suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap who was arrested at a motel about 40 miles across the border in Tennessee.

State and federal agencies then launched a search operation for the suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Big Stone Gap who was arrested at a motel about 40 miles across the border in Tennessee.

The motel in Kingsport, Tennessee where the arrests took place, seen above

The motel in Kingsport, Tennessee where the arrests took place, seen above

But, due to injuries, he died with his family in the hospital at around 7:00 pm today.

‘The loss of Mike will be felt in our city and throughout Wise County.

‘He not only served as an officer with the Town of Big Stone Gap Police Department, but also as a volunteer for the Big Stone Gap Fire Department.

‘Please keep his family in your prayers tonight, as it should have been a day to celebrate his 29th birthday – not a day to mourn his passing.’

The United States Marshals Service offered a reward of $10,000 to anyone providing information leading to the arrest of the suspect.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam mourned Sunday and ordered the state flags to be lowered on the day of his detention.

Northam hailed Chandler as a “dedicated public servant, a devoted husband and father, and a trusted member of the Big Stone Gap community.”

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Virginia State Police at 276-228-3131 or by email at [email protected]

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