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A Narrows man was about to be served warrants on Saturday when gunfire broke out.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
State police released additional information Monday about the events that led to the death of a Giles County man after an officer-involved shooting Saturday.
Jonathan V. Robertson, 32, of Narrows was killed after authorities said he exchanged gunfire with law enforcement personnel in three different locations.
Robertson was a suspect in a robbery and shooting that occurred early Friday, state police have said. The Giles County Sheriff’s Office responded at 1:56 a.m. Friday to a report of a shooting on College Street in Narrows, according to a Monday news release from state police spokeswoman Corinne Geller. Police determined that Luke Robbins, 18, of Narrows had been robbed and shot. Robbins was transported to Carilion Giles Community Hospital for treatment of injuries that were not life threatening, Geller said.
Hospital spokesman Eric Earnhart said Monday that Robbins was not a patient at the hospital.
The sheriff’s office, with assistance from the Wytheville office of the Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation, obtained three charges — malicious wounding, robbery and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony — against Robertson.
While preparing to serve those warrants on Saturday afternoon, a sheriff’s deputy and state police special agent encountered Robertson on Fletchers Mountain Road about 4:30 p.m., according to the release.
Geller said that Robertson parked his Chevrolet S-10 pickup across the road, blocking their path. When they identified themselves as law enforcement, she said, Robertson drew a weapon and began shooting at them, so they returned fire.
Robertson drove off in his truck, but his tires were punctured after an unspecified distance by a spike strip put down by deputies, Geller said. She said that despite damage to his vehicle, Robertson continued another 75 yards to Narrows Road, where there was another exchange of gunfire with sheriff’s deputies.
Robertson then continued on in his truck until he went off the road on Thomas Drive in Pearisburg, and more gunfire was traded between him and deputies and Pearisburg police, Geller said. He was taken into custody about 4:45 p.m. No law enforcement officers were injured.
Robertson was ultimately flown to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital, where he died a short time later, she said. No details about Robertson’s injuries have been released. An autopsy is being conducted by the medical examiner’s office in Roanoke.
Investigators have since recovered a stolen handgun and a small amount of illegal narcotics from Robertson’s residence in the 100 block of Friendship Road in Narrows, Geller said.
State police on Monday identified a passenger in Robertson’s pickup truck at the time of the shooting on Fletchers Mountain Road.
Clifton L. Clowers, 28, of Christiansburg bailed out of Robertson’s pickup after the first exchange of gunfire and was taken into custody by the sheriff’s office, according to the state police investigation. Clowers was not injured and has been charged with one count of robbery and one count of malicious wounding in relation to Friday’s incident, Geller said.
The Giles County Sheriff’s Office has arrested two other men in relation to Friday’s robbery and shooting. Ian G. Rhody, 20, of Pearisburg and Kyle L. Williams, 20, of Pembroke have been charged with robbery, malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
Clowers, Rhody and Williams were being held Monday afternoon at the New River Valley Regional Jail. The sheriff’s office is continuing to investigate Friday’s robbery and shooting. When reached Monday afternoon, Sheriff Morgan Millirons referred all questions to Geller.
The officer-involved shooting Saturday afternoon also remains under investigation. Once state police complete their investigation, the findings will be turned over to the Giles County commonwealth’s attorney for review and decision.
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