Virginia State Police say Vester Flanagan was in very critical condition after he shot himself, but authorities now confirm he is dead.
Franklin County Shooting Suspect In Custody:
Shortly before 11:30 a.m., Virginia State Police spotted the suspect vehicle headed eastbound on Interstate 66. With emergency lights activated the Virginia State Police trooper initiated a traffic stop on the suspect vehicle. The suspect vehicle refused to stop and sped away from the trooper. Minutes later, the suspect vehicle ran off the road and crashed. The troopers approached the vehicle and found the male driver suffering from a gunshot wound. He is being transported to a nearby hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries.
The male driver is believed to be the same male subject who shot three people this morning in Franklin County during a television news interview.
Latest developments (CNN)
• Law enforcement confronted Vester Flanagan on Interstate 66 and Flanagan shot himself, officials tell CNN. It is not clear whether he was killed or injured.
• ABC News reported that it has received a fax containing a 23-page manifesto from someone named Bryce Williams,the news outlet tweeted. The document has been handed over to investigators, ABC said.
• Virginia Tech, photographer Adam Ward’s alma mater, said in a statement, “It is shocking and deeply saddening for this community to be again struck by gun violence. We deplore this senseless violence, now seemingly commonplace in our society.”
• One of Ward’s professors, Robert Denton, added, “Adam was a delightful person. He worked hard — you could tell he loved what he was doing. He wasn’t afraid to pitch in and do whatever was necessary for the broadcast. He did whatever was needed with a smile and with grace. He was simply a very nice young man and very professional.”
MONETA, Va. — According to a former WDBJ employee, Vester L. Flanagan — the man authorities say they’re seeking in connection with Wednesday’s fatal shooting of two journliasts — worked at WDBJ as a reporter about a year using the on-air name Bryce Williams.
The former employee said Flanagan was fired from the station, though the reason for the firing was not made public. A law enforcement source briefed on the search said it is believed that Flanagan is still in the Virginia area.
Police are searching for Flanagan, who killed a WDBJ news reporter and photojournalist at Smith Mountain Lake Wednesday morning, an image of the suspect appears to have been captured on the photojournalist’s camera.
The image showed a man holding a gun, pointing the weapon at the camera.
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said Wednesday in a live interview with WTOP radio that police are pursuing the suspect, and that they hope to have him in custody soon. McAuliffe confirmed that authorities know who the suspect is.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is participating in the manhunt. Area schools are on lockdown.
WDBJ general manager Jeff Marks identified the shooting victims as 24-year-old Alison Parker and 27-year-old Adam Ward. Parker and Ward were in the midst of a live feature report from Bridgewater Plaza when anywhere between six and eight gunshots rang out. The camera then dropped to the ground and the broadcast cut back to the anchor desk.
“We are working with police to get to the bottom of this senseless crime,” WDBJ general manager Jeff Marks said. “How can this individual have robbed these families, the families of Alison and Adam of their lives and their happiness and their love.”