CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Police in West Virginia say a sheriff's deputy fatally shot a suspect who tried to grab the deputy's gun inside a cruiser.
John O'Handley, 55, was arrested on a methamphetamine-manufacturing charge and was being driven to a jail when he reached between the seats for the deputy's gun Tuesday, the Charleston Gazette-Mail (http://bit.ly/2byb6rr) quoted Hampshire County Deputy Nathan Sions as saying.
Following a struggle, the deputy fired one shot, striking O'Handley in the head and killing him, Sions said.
Sheriff's officers from Hampshire County and Frederick County, Virginia, had gone to O'Handley's home in Yellow Spring near the West Virginia-Virginia border about 110 miles northwest of Washington, D.C.
Sions said after O'Handley was arraigned at the Hampshire County Judicial Center, he was being taken to the Potomac Highlands Regional Jail in Augusta when he reached for the gun as the deputy's cruiser traveled along U.S. Route 50.
Sions said the older-model cruiser didn't have a barrier between the front and back seats. O'Handley's hands were handcuffed in front of him after complaining of discomfort when they were handcuffed behind him.
"Out of the goodness of the deputy's heart, he cuffed him up front to try to relieve the pain he was having," Sions said.
Sions declined to release the name of the deputy, who is currently on paid leave. The races of the deputy and O'Handley weren't known. The sheriff's office didn't immediately respond to a telephone message Wednesday.
Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail, http://wvgazettemail.com.