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3 in custody after officer-involved shooting and chase

Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 2:52 PM EDT
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UPDATE 7/27/21 @ 7:10 p.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Three people who were part of an officer-involved shooting and chase are in custody, Charleston Police Chief Tyke Hunt said Tuesday evening.

Joseph Scott Larch, 38, of Charleston, is being treated in the hospital for gunshot wounds and was listed in critical condition. Hunt said he has an extensive criminal history and faces attempted murder and wanton endangerment charges for the shooting.

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Another man, Brandon Bandy, 26, of Elkview, was arrested later Tuesday evening. He was wanted on a bench warrant for driving under the influence and possession of a controlled substance. Hunt said Bandy, who had run with one handcuff on, was arrested in the Jordan Creek area by Kanawha County Sheriff’s deputies.

James Evans, 20, of Elkview, was being treated for crash-related injuries. Originally wanted on federal charges, Evans was charged with fleeing with reckless indifference.

Hunt explained that the incident started around 2:30 p.m. after officers saw a vehicle without a visible license plate on Court St. Bodycam footage shows a second officer pulling up to the scene to assist with the traffic stop. As the second officer pulled up, Larch began to run towards Piedmont Rd. The officer ran after Larch and yelled several times for Larch to stop, announcing that he was with the police. Larch then turned around and began firing a gun at the officer, the officer returned fire hitting Larch.

At that point, you can see Larch enter a facility in the video. Cops then follow him in, find him and immediately call for a medic.

“That speaks volumes of the character of the Charleston Police Department, to just have someone try to take your life and now you get to change gears and do the best you can to save theirs,” said Hunt.

Hunt said the other officer on scene was in the process of arresting Bandy but once shots were fired, he quickly took off to help his brother in blue. Bandy ran off with one handcuff around his wrist.

While the two officers were arresting Larch, police say Evans got back into the vehicle and took off. He sent police on a short chase which quickly ended on the 900 block of Valley Rd. near the golf course.

One officer suffered a hamstring injury during the incident, but no officers were hit by gunfire.

“Thank the good Lord, no police officers were injured,” Hunt said.

A fourth man who was in the car cooperated with police and was not taken into custody.

The incident happened in the vicinity of the Charleston Habitat ReStore, which is where Larch went after being hit back with gunfire and was quickly followed by police. The Habitat ReStore released this statement to WSAZ:

“Our staff are safe (and) we would like to emphasize that this shooting occurred off of our property. At no time were any customers or staff members in danger.

Our first concern is for the safety of all persons who are in our facility. We are deeply concerned by this incident and are following-up closely with our staff and impacted customers.”

We will have more on this developing story. Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

UPDATE 7/27/21 3:35 p.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Shots were fired during a traffic stop Tuesday, according to the Charleston Police Department.

Officers tell WSAZ.com a suspect fired shots toward an officer and the officer returned fire, hitting the suspect.

The suspect is alert and currently being treated, officials say.

According to police, one of the suspects involved took off in a vehicle, leading officers on a chase that ended in a crash in the area of Greendale Drive and Valley Road.

One person has been arrested.

A WSAZ crew at the scene did witness an officer being loaded into an ambulance.

There’s no word on that officer’s condition at this time.

This is a developing story.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Charleston Police are investigating a pursuit and shots fired.

Metro 911 says it happened in the 1600 block of Pennsylvania Avenue Tuesday around 2:30 p.m.

No other details have been released.

WSAZ has a crew headed to the scene.

Keep checking the WSAZ App for the latest information.

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