State trooper dies after being shot during drug raid

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CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Va. (WRIC/WAVY) — A Virginia State Police trooper and a suspect died after a shootout during a drug raid in Cumberland County Monday evening.

Trooper Lucas B. Dowell, who was a member of the Virginia State Police Tactical Team, was helping the Piedmont Regional Drug and Gang Task Force with a search warrant at a home on the 1500 block of Cumberland Road, near the Farmville line, shortly before 10 p.m.

Police say, a man inside the home began shooting at authorities. The suspect inside the home was shot and killed. Trooper Dowell was transported to Southside Community Hospital in Farmville where he succumbed to his injuries.

Trooper Lucas B. Dowell

Dowell becomes the Department’s 66th line of duty death. 

“This is an extremely difficult day for the State Police,” said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “We are humbled by Lucas’ selfless sacrifice and grateful for his dedicated service to the Commonwealth. He will forever be remembered by his State Police Family for his great strength of character, tenacity, valor, loyalty and sense of humor.” 

The suspect has not yet been identified. No other troopers were injured in the shooting.

The two troopers who fired their weapons have been put on administrative leave while Virginia State Police investigate the incident.

The Chilhowie, Va. native graduated the Virginia State Police’s 122nd Basic Session in November 2014. Since graduation, he was assigned to the Virginia State Police Appomattox Division; his latest assignment was on patrol in Area 20, which encompasses the City of Lynchburg, and Amherst and Campbell counties. He was a member of the Appomattox Division Tactical Team — the equivalent of a SWAT Team. He is survived by his parents and a sister.

“This is an extremely difficult day for the State Police,” said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “We are humbled by Lucas’ selfless sacrifice and grateful for his dedicated service to the Commonwealth. He will forever be remembered by his State Police Family for his great strength of character, tenacity, valor, loyalty and sense of humor.”

Gov. Ralph Northam issued a statement on Dowell’s death Tuesday afternoon:

“The passing of Trooper Dowell is a great loss to the Commonwealth. My heartfelt condolences go out to his family and friends who knew Trooper Dowell best. We are grateful for his dedication to the safety of our communities, and for all of those who put themselves in harm’s way to protect others.”

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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