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W.Va. Officer Shot Released From Hospital, Search Continues for Gunman

By: Jessica Ralston Email
By: Jessica Ralston Email

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UPDATE @ 6pm
OAK HILL, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- What should have been a simple traffic stop ended with an officer down.

A worse case scenario that has police hunting for the driver who got out of his car and started shooting at an Oak Hill Police Officer early Thursday morning.

27-year-old Corporal Chris Young took a bullet to the chest but survived thanks to his bullet proof vest. He was out of the hospital hours later.

Now, the focus is on the shooter, a man who showed no mercy and could easily strike again.

"People using drugs will do anything," Detective Lt. Jim Sizemore with the Fayette Sheriff's Department said. "I would say that when this is cleared up that it was in some way related to drug abuse."

The traffic stop happened on Route 61 in Oak Hill at about 4:00 Thursday Morning. Corporal Young turned on his lights to pull a driver over, but the driver didn't pull to the side -- according to officers, he hit his breaks, jumped out and started shooting.

"This guy had something to hide," Lt. Sizemore said. "He got out of his car and started shooting before Corporal Young even got out of his vehicle."

One of the bullets hit the cruiser, the other hit Officer Young in the chest.

"It's very surprising to me that anyone would have such disrespect for a fellow human being," Oak Hill Police Chief Mike Whisman said, "much less a police officer out there doing his job."

Police say if there's one thing to be thankful for -- it's the bullet proof vest that saved his life.

Now, an investigation is underway from several departments as they team up to track down the driver who undeniably took a wrong turn.

"This is a brotherhood and you do everything you can to protect your family and find the guy who did this," Lt. Sizemore said.

Officer Young did fire back at the shooter, but police say they aren't sure if the man was hit.

Investigators have been searching for him all day. They say they are looking for a man driving a large, dark colored Cadillac with tinted windows and Ohio tags.



UPDATE @ 12:00Pm
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The Oak Hill Police Officer shot early Thursday morning has been treated and released from a local hospital.

The shooting happened around 4:30 a.m. along Route 61.

Police Chief Michael Whisman tells WSAZ.com Corporal Chris Young, 27, was starting to make a traffic stop when the driver of the car stopped in the middle of the road, got out of the vehicle and started shooting at the officer.

Corporal Young was hit by one of the bullets, but his bullet proof vest saved his life.

Young did return fire, but there's no word if any of the bullets hit the suspect.

Corporal Young has been with the Oak Hill Police Department for more than five years.

Young was taken to the hospital for treatment, but he has been released from the hospital.

At the time of the shooting, Corporal Young was with a K-9, but the dog was not injured.

A portion of Route 61 was closed for several hours while investigators searched the area for the gunman. However, the roadway re-opened to traffic around noon Thursday.

A spokesperson with the West Virginia State Police tells WSAZ.com investigators are looking for a man driving a dark colored Cadillac, with tinted windows and Ohio tags. Because the shooting happened so fast, the only physical description of the driver is that he is African American.

According to a Fayette County Detective, they believe this case could be drug related.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the very latest information.



ORIGINAL STORY
OAK HILL, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A bullet proof has saved the life of an Oak Hill, W.Va. Police Officer.

Dispatchers in Fayette County tell WSAZ.com that the officer was shot during a traffic stop early Thursday morning.

It happened on Route 61 around 4:30 a.m.

Dispatchers say the officer was not injured. Police are still searching for the person who shot the officer.

No other details have been released.

We've been informed by Fayette County Schools that buses will not run on Route 61 this morning due to the incident.

Right now, a portion of Route 61 just outside the main part of town is closed to traffic. West Virginia State Police, Fayette County Sheriff's Department and the Oak Hill Police Department are on still scene trying to locate the gunman.

WV MetroNews is reporting the officer has been with the department for about five years. They're also reported the officer called 911 to report he was shot by someone driving a Cadillac.

The officer was conscious and alert when emergency crews arrived on scene. He is being treated at Plateau Medical Center in Oak Hill.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for updated information.


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