The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Police/Courts

January 15, 2013

State Police blame increased aggression, lack of respect for officer-involved shootings

SOUTH CHARLESTON — West Virginia law enforcement agencies have shot and killed four men in less than a week, and a spokesman for the State Police blames a growing aggression and lack of respect for authority figures.

No one is eager to be involved in what he calls “a critical incident,” Sgt. Michael Baylous tells WSAZ-TV. But officers must make snap decisions about the threats they’re facing based on their training.

On Jan. 8, Lewisburg police killed 44-year-old Jimmy L. Hamlin Jr. of Kathleen, Ga., after he allegedly threatened them with a rifle. He’d been pulled over after a domestic violence incident was reported but refused to comply with officers’ commands.

Two days later, troopers killed 37-year-old John Edward Dempsey of Logan after he led them on a chase in a vehicle he’d allegedly carjacked. Authorities say Dempsey had been suspected of killing two men during break-ins at their homes.

And on Saturday, officers killed two men in separate incidents.

Kanawha County sheriff’s deputies shot 49-year-old Lawrence Edward “Pete” Vaughn at a home near Pinch after he fired a pistol at them. Authorities had been answering a domestic violence call involving Vaughn and his mother.

Mercer County deputies, meanwhile, shot 31-year-old Jason Dillon late Saturday night in a standoff.

After Dillon allegedly trying to destroy a house near Montcalm with a chain saw, police say he brandished a club-type weapon and refused commands to drop it.

Last year, Baylous said there were 32 reported cases of officers threatened with a gun. In the first few weeks of 2013, there have already been three.

He blames the attitude of “a whole generation of kids” on their poor upbringing.

“Morals weren’t clearly defined for them,” he said. “As a result of that and other contributing factors, we’re reaping what we’ve sown.”

1
Text Only
Police/Courts
  • Work release inmate may face arson charge

    A Beckley Correctional Center inmate who escaped in May, but was recaptured last week after riding a bicycle with no tail light reflectors, may be facing more charges including first-degree arson.

    July 29, 2014

  • Ronceverte man charged with domestic battery

    A 26-year-old Ronceverte man was charged with domestic battery Friday, according to a Greenbrier County criminal complaint.

    July 29, 2014

  • Two men sentenced for unrelated crimes in Raleigh court

    A 30-year-old man was sentenced Monday for daytime burglary, which, when added to his former convictions, will total nine to 88 years.

    July 29, 2014

  • Beckley residents arrested on conspiracy charge

    Two Beckley residents were arrested and charged with felony conspiracy, according to a release from the West Virginia State Police.

    July 29, 2014

  • Thief smashes AccessHealth Daniels' clinic's door

    July 28, 2014

  • tunnel firefighters Bluefield firefighters first ones on the scene

    Lights in the southern end of the tunnel illuminate an odd design beside the catwalk near the left lane of the northbound tube of the East River Mountain Tunnel that transports I-77 from Virginia into West Virginia. Two firefighters who made the initial assault through the total darkness of the soot and smoke-filled tunnel left those marks as they slid their arms along the catwalk wall on their journey back to the light.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • tunnel Fire closes I-77 for hours

    East River Mountain Tunnel was engulfed in a cloud of black smoke Friday as a result of a tractor-trailer fire inside the tunnel that ignited just after 3 p.m.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sen. Manchin, brother sued by another brother for $1.7 million

    A $1.7 million civil lawsuit has been filed by John Manchin II against his brothers, U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin III and Roch (Rock) Manchin.

     

    July 26, 2014

  • Family members charged in alleged mob beating

    A local family allegedly worked together to beat a man with sticks, boards and metal pipes, according to a criminal complaint from Monroe County Magistrate Court.

    July 26, 2014

  • Jury trial set in Bob Graham case

    Robert E. “Bob” Graham, the former executive director of the Wyoming County Council on Aging and All-Care Home and Community Services Inc., will be back in U.S. District Court in Bluefield this October for a trial to recover consequential damages for aggravation and inconvenience from National Union Fire Insurance Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., the insurance company that provided him coverage when he served as director of the two agencies.

    July 25, 2014

AP Video
Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins
Web Extra