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Handcuffed Man Murders W.Va. Trooper

August 29, 2012  | 

West Virginia Trooper Marshall Bailey. Photo: WVSP
West Virginia Trooper Marshall Bailey. Photo: WVSP

A suspect who fatally shot a West Virginia trooper and wounded two other officers late Tuesday was shot and killed after several sheriff's deputies tracked him to a barn.

Trooper Marshall Bailey, a 16-year veteran, was killed by a handcuffed auto-theft suspect at the Wallback park-and-ride on Interstate 79 in Clay County, Col. Jay Smithers, West Virginia State Police superintendent, said during a Wednesday afternoon press briefing.

The incident began when Troopers Bailey and Eric Workman spotted a white Chevy Silverado that had been reported stolen. A dispatcher sent the troopers to the area, after a 911 caller reported a reckless driver of the Silverado at 7:25 p.m.

Troopers Bailey and Workman, working in one cruiser, stopped the vehicle at 7:36 p.m. at the park-and-ride. The officers arrested the driver, 20-year-old Luke Baber, after determining he was intoxicated. Baber was searched, handcuffed, and placed in the back of the cruiser. The troopers called for a tow truck.

While seated in the back of the cruiser, Baber pulled out a Hi-Point 9mm pistol and fatally shot Trooper Bailey. Baber then shot Trooper Workman, who remains in "extremely critical condition" in a coma at CAMC General Hospital. Baber also stole Trooper Bailey's service weapon, Col. Smithers said.

Baber then shot the two truck driver, Frank Massey, who arrived to pick up the vehicle. Massey returned to his truck and called for help.

Sheriff's deputies from Clay County and Roane County searching for Baber located him at a nearby barn. Deputies engaged Baber, who shot Roane County Deputy John Westfall three times in the wrist, left arm, and abdomen. Baber was killed in the return fire.

Deputy Westfall's vest likely saved his life.

"The thoughts and prayers of the West Virginia State Police are with the family of the fallen trooper and with those who were injured," Sgt. Michael Baylous, a state police spokesman, said in a release.

There have been 39 West Virginia troopers killed in the line of duty, Col. Smithers said.

By Paul Clinton


Second W.Va. Trooper Dies

Comments (24)

Displaying 1 - 24 of 24

John Kilpatrick @ 8/29/2012 10:22 AM

For Trooper Marshall Bailey and his family....... Rest in Peace, Brother.

Seasons drift so quickly
Beneath the single sky
A lesson in the making
All things must come to die.

Therein lies the silence
The journey beyond the breath
To flowers in the forest
We've now become in death.

But speak of the glint of the eye
Reflected in Damascus Blade
For those who saw freedom & honor
And in battle their lives they gave.

So take heart men of Valor
Know your deeds will endure the night
Live on as flowers in the forest
Live on, within God's light.

Robert Smith @ 8/29/2012 3:22 PM

Rest in Peace, brother

Prayers to your family, may God watch over them

Tschako @ 8/29/2012 3:40 PM

A sad reminder to let no search be casual or perfunctory.

Mary F @ 8/29/2012 4:08 PM

Mr. Kilpatrick, thank you for a beautiful poetic tribute to our fallen police officers in the line of duty, especially Trooper Bailey. Thank you Trooper Bailey for your service; may you rest in peace and may God comfort and bless your family during this time of sorrow. I hope and pray that Trooper Workman fights to recover and returns to his loving family. God bless all our brothers and sisters in public safety who risk their lives to keep us safe.

[email protected] @ 8/29/2012 5:51 PM

A very sad day for all in uniform. Mr. Kilpatrick for a warm tribute and my condolences to Trooper Baillys' family and brothers and sisters in blue. Guys, please really search before putting them in the squad. Thie is the secondbshooting in less then a week by a cuffed and search perp. Blues, stay safe.

Luke Easter @ 8/29/2012 6:07 PM

Searched? A 9mm was missed in said search?

Cuffed? Behind his back?

John @ IA retired @ 8/29/2012 6:47 PM

My sympathy to the LEO families. Everyone, please make the search a good one.

Crispianranger @ 8/29/2012 6:50 PM

reference Luke's comments; ditto!

TripWire @ 8/29/2012 8:46 PM

Nothing hit us harder than to hear one of our own getting killed by something that could have been prevented. It could have been any one of us but this time it was him. Sad.

Luke Easter @ 8/29/2012 10:24 PM

No! Not by anyone. Academy 101, all suspects are to be handcuffed behind the back & cuffs are to be double locked w/no exceptions. Tough to grab a weapon, aim accurately enough to hit the target from behind your back & in cuffs no less. If it was by anyone of us, thousands of cops would die each week. I can see missing a derringer but a 9? Not sad but sloppy. Complacency, routine, mundane has no place in police work. Now for security guards well, that's another story. Professionalism people so anarchy will not rule.

Tim @ 8/30/2012 1:00 AM

Almost seems impossible for something like this to happen. He was also able to shoot it out with the Officers that found him in the barn. This tragic scenario should be used all across the country to train LEO's. At least the criminals life was terminated and we don't have to worry about him killing or injuring anyone else.

Trigger @ 8/30/2012 5:03 AM

What a sad loss. I was not there however this scenario brings back memories of an incident in my rookie year in law enforcement where my partner "searched" and handcuffed the dirtball with his hands in front. How he missed a Smith & Wesson .357 mag snub nose during the search still scares me. Fortunately we were able to subdue the dirtball before he got a shot off. Don't cut corners when searching and hand cuff in the back.

Capt David-retired LA Cou @ 8/30/2012 6:55 AM

There is more to this story I would like to know...either a very bad searcg, they cuffed him in front, he slipped cuffs and got his gun...Such a rotten situation...

Rudy Medina @ 8/30/2012 7:37 AM

Somerhere along the line, either the perp wasn't searched properly ,or the 9mm, was already in the vehicle, I don't know all of the particulars in this case, but someone didn't practice basic apprehension procedures. Lives were lost. I pray for the trooper that was lost and my heartfelt condolensces go out the family and friends. Thank you for your service, TROOPER, MARSHALL BAILEY. May God take you in his loving arms forever.

Chris Watchus @ 8/30/2012 7:43 AM

My prayers go out to the families Please people lets make sure we do good searches.

MGC @ 8/30/2012 8:27 AM

Nice comment on the security officers there LUKE EASTER. Plenty of fine security officers in the world, regardless of what was done right or wrong and by who. A law enforcement officer has been killed and another seriously injured. A sad day for law enforcement.

C.K. Aurelius @ 8/30/2012 8:55 AM

God bless you Trooper Bailey. Thank you for your service.

Chuck Hood @ 8/30/2012 10:13 AM

God bless Trooper Bailey, mayt he rest in peace.
As a special forces retired vet and a father of a police office in Texas, I have a heavy heart when reading such stories....cuff in the rear and ALWAYS search twice......your life and your family is worth the extra time..TO ALL OFFICERS, PLEASE BE SAFE. AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE.

Luke Easter @ 8/30/2012 10:32 AM

First thing to do when you are assigned a car, check it for contraband. Especially if the prior shift had an arrest. There is no excuse.

Steve Pass @ 8/30/2012 12:25 PM

In some of the remarks above "handcuffed behind his back" will not mean anything for some bad guys. I personally have handcuffed prisoners behind their back only to find them in front when Iget them to lock up. Yes there is a way to prevent this. My concern is the search how do you miss a 9mm, that turned out to be a fatal mistake. We in LE have from time to time let our guard down and those of us that did have been lucky that it didn't cost us our life. I'm now 63 with a Son as a Deputy and we talk about these things many times, for the reason that I want him to always have in the back of his mind that one minor screw up can cost him his life, that every traffic stop is a potential high risk life altering stop, to always be on guard. Many civilians don't understand whay a Cop stands behind the window and makes them turn their head quite aways to talk with the Officer, its for his protection, I'm not even sorry that you might be inconvienced I want my Son Home every night as I want every Officer who puts on that Uniform who goes out and deals with the public. I also want to say my heart hurts for the baily family and ask God to be with them and to the Workman family God's hand is on him and will be there for you may he recover with no side effects and be able to return to the job he loves, To the bad guy, you're dead, that's GOOD.

Mike Lubert @ 8/30/2012 1:41 PM

Heaven has yet another Officer to Guard the gates. Thank You for your service Trooper Bailey, and God Bless his Family, Friends, Community, and as always Fellow Officers.

The Guardian @ 9/1/2012 3:15 PM

RIP my brothers.....Lets go guys....lets tighten things up here....time is on our side....lets not rush.....The Guardian is with you and your families.......

Luke Easter @ 9/29/2012 5:23 PM

Handcuff behind the back & put the seat belt on. Come on gyus. This is not an everyday occurrence. Procedure was muffed. Complacency was the rule of thumb in this one.

john swartz @ 7/25/2015 3:12 PM

Blame whoever searched em

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