BOONE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – An hours-long standoff between law enforcement and a suspect who opened fire on two deputies, killing them, has ended, officials confirm to FOX 46.
Authorities said early Thursday morning that the suspect is dead. It is not clear how he was killed.
Two deputies were shot Wednesday while conducting a welfare check at a Watauga County home.
Authorities said at 9:44 a.m. Wednesday, April 28, the Sheriff’s Office responded to a call for a welfare check along Hardaman Circle in Boone because the homeowner and his family did not attend work recently or respond to telephone calls.
Deputies proceeded to enter the home after discovering all vehicles belonging to the residents were on the property. Upon entering the home, deputies received gunfire from an unknown individual within the residence. Two deputies were struck by the gunfire.
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One officer, Sgt. Chris Ward, died after being flown to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment. K-9 Deputy Logan Fox remained on the scene. Officials confirmed his death Thursday morning.
“This is an incredibly tragic situation and our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved as well as their families and our community,” said Watauga County Sheriff Len Hagaman. “I greatly appreciate the tremendous support we are receiving from law enforcement agencies across the region and the state.”
Officials said the shooter remained active on the scene for hours, barricading himself in a section of the home and periodically firing gunshots toward officers.
People living in the area where the shooting took place say they are shocked and can’t believe something like this would happen in Boone.
Trish Kanipe, who works with the Boone chapter of ‘Adopt-a-Cop’, says she’s gone from heartbreak to anger ever since hearing the shots on Wednesday morning.
“Heartbroken,” added Kanipe. “I live up by where it happened, so I heard the gun shots and immediately knew something was wrong.”
FOX 46 Charlotte will continue bringing you the latest information as it becomes available.