ROANOAKE, Va. - A Virginia State Police sergeant was shot and wounded Monday by an off duty Franklin County deputy sheriff, and the deputy then was shot by officers who had come to the aid of the wounded trooper, authorities said.
Sgt. M.K. Brannock’s injuries were not considered life-threatening, police said.
The deputy, Jonathan A. Agee, 32, of Boones Mill, had been sought as a suspect in an earlier shooting when Brannock stopped him. Police said Agee shot Brannock just before noon. Agee then sustained life-threatening injuries after being shot by two state police officers who arrived to aid Brannock, police said.
Both men were taken to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. No other injuries were reported at the scene of the Interstate 81 shooting, which is being investigated by the Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation and a police shootings investigation team.
“The focus of investigators right now is piecing together the exact sequence of events leading up to both shootings,” said Col. W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police superintendent. “This is a difficult day, needless to say, for Virginia’s law enforcement community.”
Media reports said traffic on Interstate 81 was backed up for 14 miles as vehicles were forced to detour off the freeway.
Brannock was shot after he stopped Agee’s patrol car on Interstate 81 near Roanoke, police said. Agee was being sought in connection with the fatal shooting of his ex-wife, Jennifer Louise Agee, 30, of Salem, minutes earlier at a Roanoke convenience store, Roanoke Police said.
The convenience store shooting happened about 11:30 Monday morning at a Sheetz store near the Civic Center, Roanoke police spokeswoman Aisha Johnson said.
Agee followed his ex-wife’s vehicle in the parking lot and shot her multiple times with a rifle, Johnson said. She said Jennifer Agee died at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. A murder warrant has been issued for her ex-husband, but has not been served, Johnson said.
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The two officers involved in the freeway shooting have been placed on leave.Brannock, 35, is a 13-year veteran of the state police.