MOOREFIELD, W.Va. — The man who allegedly shot a Moorefield police corporal before being shot himself Thursday was a sex offender wanted in jurisdictions outside Hardy County, Moorefield Police Chief Stephen W. Riggleman said Monday.
“It was an unfortunate series of events that resulted in the shooting of our officer and the wounding of the suspect, but we were able to get a sexual predator off the street,” Riggleman said. “We got tipped off by state police of warrants for this fugitive, who could possibly be returning to a location in town.”
Moorefield Police Cpl. Tyler Robinette and Lt. Melody A. Burrows were reportedly in separate police vehicles and in the area of Clay Street when the officers observed the man outside of a residence.
“Our officers confronted him before he pulled a 9mm handgun and fired a shot that struck Cpl. Robinette in the arm before Lt. Burrows fired the shot that disabled the suspect,” said Riggleman, adding “everything took place outside the residence.”
Riggleman and the suspect, a West Virginia resident who has not been identified, were treated at the scene before the arrival of emergency medical service providers, the Hardy County Sheriff’s Office and state police said.
“There were some passersby who also stopped to offer assistance,” the chief said.
The suspect was shot in the abdomen and treated initially at Grant Memorial Hospital prior to being transported Friday to an undisclosed medical facility. He reportedly remains under police guard.
“He’s in another hospital under another name after being flown out for further medical treatment,” Riggleman said.
Monday, Robinette continued to recuperate at home from a gunshot wound to the arm. He was provided emergency room treatment at the Grant County hospital and discharged Friday morning.
Riggleman said Robinette and Burrows were placed on administrative leave, pending the outcome of an internal investigation.
A criminal investigation is being conducted by state police.
“Corporal Robinette got shot but he continued to attempt to take the suspect into custody before Lt. Burrows did what she needed to do,” Riggleman said. “Lt. Burrows probably saved lives because there were bystanders involved who could have been hurt or killed,” said the chief.