The sheriff’s deputies have been ambushed and fatally wounded heading down within the basement of the house, Watauga County Sheriff Len Hagaman advised reporters Thursday.
The sheriff’s workplace had been alerted Sunday that the unidentified suspect who killed the deputies in addition to his mom and stepfather earlier than taking his personal life “may be an issue,” Hagaman mentioned.
Ok-9 Deputy Logan Fox died on the scene within the Blue Ridge Mountain city of Boone, and Sgt. Chris Ward died after being flown to a neighborhood hospital, the sheriff’s workplace mentioned in an announcement.
Hagaman mentioned “involved of us” who knew the 32-year outdated suspect had alerted the sheriff’s workplace however deputies didn’t “encounter him the place we thought he can be.” The deputies on Wednesday didn’t suppose the suspect was residence, in line with the sheriff.
Deputies had seemed for the suspect over the weekend to attempt to “get him away from someplace so we may have some extra management over him,” Hagaman mentioned.
The deputies have been responding to a name for a welfare test Wednesday after the house owner’s employer reported that the particular person didn’t present up for work and was not answering their telephone, in line with the assertion.
A Boone Police Division officer was additionally struck by gunfire whereas making an attempt to rescue the downed deputies however his protecting gear prevented damage, the assertion mentioned.
A feminine deputy was capable of safely retreat from the home, in line with Hagaman.
Gov. Roy Cooper, in an announcement, mentioned he had spoken with Hagaman to supply condolences and help.
“We grieve for Sgt. Chris Ward, Ok-9 Deputy Logan Fox and your entire Watauga County legislation enforcement neighborhood in the present day after these tragic deaths within the line of responsibility,” Cooper mentioned. “These horrific shootings that claimed lives and family members present the ever-present hazard legislation enforcement can encounter within the line of responsibility.”
The standoff ended shortly earlier than 11 p.m. Wednesday, the assertion mentioned.
“That is an extremely tragic state of affairs and our ideas and prayers are with everybody concerned in addition to their households and our neighborhood,” Hagaman mentioned in an announcement.
The investigation is being led by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.
The shooter had barricaded within the residence and sometimes fired within the path of legislation enforcement officers, in line with the assertion.
Close by residents have been evacuated.
Greater than a dozen legislation enforcement businesses responded.
CNN’s Jamiel Lynch, Raja Razek and Giovanna Van Leeuwen contributed to this report.