tv The Real Story With Gretchen Carlson FOX News August 26, 2015 11:00am-12:01pm PDT
and adam ward, television station employees who were murdered on the job this morning. >> we certainly think of their families and send prayers to their families today and all those affected in the community. we'll have continuing coverage here on fox news. >> thank you for joining us. >> "the real story" starts tkcq fox news alert, continuing coverage. disgruntled former employee apparently attempting to take his own life hours after walking up to a fellow reporter and her cameraman who were live on the air and opening fire and murdering them. alison parker, 24 years old. cameraman adam ward was 27. a third victim is in the hospital after surgery. we're here today to bring you the real story on this breaking news and more. as we await an update from police. we are awaiting a press conference, the first one, an update from police after the suspect was identified as vester
lee flanagan 2r ii who went by the name on television bryce williams. he sued the station over racism. peter doocy is live in hardy, virginia, with the very latest. you have just arrived there, peter. what have you learned? >> reporter: to get her to the franklin county virginia sheriff's office where the press conference will be just over my right shoulder in front of a local fire truck and a local ambulance, we did drive by that bridgewater plaza on the shores of smith mountain lake, which is where all of this happened this morning, this tragedy happened this morning. and there are a lot of police, there are a lot of investigators there right now. they are trying to figure out what happened that we could not see on camera. and remember, we have now seen this horrible, unspeakable crime from two different camera angles. we've seen the suspected shooter, who approached
apparently with a hand gun and a smartphone out as he stalks she is three people who had no idea what was about to happen. they're just talking about local tourism at the end of the summer next to a beautiful lake. we've also seen what turned out to be a critical piece of evidence so far from the fallen local news photographer's camera, adam ward's camera. they were able to get a screen grab of the shooter. you can see his faces, and you can see that he is holding a gun. now, that turned out to be a critical piece of evidence, very tragically. the photographer, adam, and his reporter, alilson were killed. the videos are difficult to watch. i can also tell you that the spot where we are right now, again, pretty close to the crime scene and the spot where the second crime scene is, where the suspected murderer was
apprehended on the side of i-66, it's almost a four-hour drive separate. so, as we were all heading down here, crews, federalf?!qñ law enforcement, when nobody really knew what exactly was going on, the shooter was heading in the opposite direction. he was actually pretty close to washington d.c. and he is now at a hospital in fairfax county, which is one of the near-d.c. suburbs being treated for what we're told are life-threatening wounds. so far in the community here in franklin county nobody has had anything but good things to say about members of the wdbj news team that were gunned down. the same people, though, don't have such nice things to say about the suspected shooter. he did, as you mentioned, apparently have a very long history of complaints. people complained about him. his bosses had such a problem with him that somebody told me that they cleared the news room
when they decided it was time to finally let him go because they thought he might get violent. they also had the police come in to drag him out of the newsroom. today, though, the police were dragging him off the side of the road to take him to the hospital because apparently, after committing a horrible crime, he tried to take the easy way out. it does not appear he succeeded yet. >> obviously, when you approach two people with a television camera on live tv and you're going to kill them you might think they'll be able to capture an image of you and that's exactly what happened. what will be interesting to try to piece together is whether or not he decided to then post the videos. he fully intended to post the videos at some point, otherwise he would not have taken them at the time of the murders. but you have to wonder if he was on his way to d.c. and he was heading out of town, what he was thinking at that point in time
to him, things that he apparently did at some point. so far the station manager says that there is really no merit to these complaints. whatever the problem was that he had in his head, it wasn't enough to just kill9: these people. he then had to start posting about it. >> yeah. in those posts he accused her of issuing racist comments against him and he accused adam ward of on filing some sort of a complaint with human resources. we're continuing to follow the story. peter doocy just arriving at the scene. peter, thank you. we're still awaiting the press conference to start from the sheriff's department. we'll bring you back there again live immediately when that happens. in the meantime the suspected shooter did not appear to want to hide his identity, alelegedl sending a 23-page fax to abc news in new york and posting several videos of the shooting online. this is earlier file video of the shooter doing reporter
standups when he worked in florida, i believe. as peter mentioned, posting messages on twitter this morning. he makes accusations of racism. here they are. more troubling, he posted video from his vantage point of shooting the victims. we will not show that video on fox as it is truly disturbing. twitter has since suspended that account and it's time to bring in steve cardy and#yfe former pe sergeant. i don't recall anyone ever taking video -- they've taken video of crimes, but then posting a murder on seediocial media. >> i've investigated a number of homicides, murder-suicides in this case and have never seen it to this length. it gives social media a whole new disturbing meaning. it's not social media's fault. this is the platform he chose to have his 15 minutes of fame to
letlçbx the world know how angr was and he did such a cowardly act. >> the accounts were suspended ten minutes later but it lives on places like youtube and other places. is this a new wave of crime and how we're going to handle it? what do we do? >> unfortunately we see this happen. it's likely that it will happen again. there will be some sort of a copy-cat that will do this type of thing. again, we have instant access with our cellphones. for people like this to get the word out, to let the world know what he's done, to him, again, it was his 15 minutes of fame. >> mm-hmm. what do you do as an employer? because earlier we heard from the general manager of the television station who said that he -- he was hard to work with and that they ultimately decided that they had to terminate him. then, a complaint against them of racism. and he said he was a disgruntled employee. were there other red flags? could the station have done
anything differently? >> i was listening to his interview, and it appears that he did everything that he possibly could have. they recognized early on that he was problematic. he's been problematic since 2010 in the media business. they felt the urge enough to bring in police because he is that much of a time bomb, if you will. so i don't know what they could have done. but we do know, in law enforcement, that somebody, somewhere knew or knew that he was going to do this or knew he was capable of this. hard to stop. >> what do you mean? >> someone in his family. someone that -- maybe a friend, someone maybe that follows him on social media knew that he was possibly capable of doing something like this. >> speaking of knowing something. so when you go out and do these live reports, you know, i looked on this young woman's twitter account. she did not say where she was going to be this morning. so how would he have known where they were going to be at 6:45 a.m. and the both of them together. apparently he was mad at both of
them. could there have been somebody on the inside of the station who would know where they were being dispatched to? what kind of trouble would they be in now. >> maybe it was done in a subtle way. maybe he's still staying in contact with someone at the station. however, look at what went into this, how much timing and thought on his part that went into this. law enforcement is going to look at his life with a fine-toothed comb because we want to know why. we want to know how could we possibly prevent this from happening again. they'll go through his entire life with a fine-toothed comb. >> what do you make oftq5; the that -- reporters go out. videographers go out 24/7 to cover stories, many times they're dangerous. will this change the way in which we do our business? >> i think today going forward it is. you're going to look at it differently. you, the people in the media, just like law enforcement, the people out in the field, you're putting your life on the line every day. you're out there with law enforcement. you're out there covering
stories like 9/11, watching your neighbors pass away. it's going to change. it has to change. because this will happen again. >> i want to remind our viewers. we are awaiting the live press conference coming out of the franklin county sheriff's office in hardy, virginia. this will be the first time that we have heard from law enforcement officials. it was supposed to start about 11 minutes ago. they're trying to get all their ducks in a row and more information that keeps coming in on this story as it continues to started at 6:45 a.m. eastern time this morning when the shootings happened. i want to continue the conversation with steve cardy. let's talk about the facts, the manifesto that apparently the suspect known as bryce williams. he also had another name.mñ(% what about this manifesto he packs faxed to abc news last night, 23 pages. >> i think it's a book of what was going on in his head prior and leading up to this incident.
i think there is going to be a lot of information in that manifesto. >> in 23 pages, one would assume that it could be one long rant of maybe his entire life of anger where he had other problems at other stations. steve, stand by, if you will, because we're going to continue following this story as we continue to wait for this press conference to start. in the meantime, the suspect in this tragedy was apparently no stranger to trouble at tv stations where he worked. many of his former colleagues say he seemed to look for it and filed lawsuits when he felt wronged. our legal panel coming up is going to take a closer look at whether the station could have done anything at all differently. right back. >> in this world we live in in which there are deranged people, people with motivations we can't begin to understand, this happens, whether it's a school in connecticut or a movie theater in colorado. americans. we're living longer than ever.
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fox news alert, we are learning more now about the suspect as we continue to wait for the press conference to start. franklin county sheriff's department. they were supposed to start about 16 minutes ago. we're going to bring you what we know now about this morning's deadly shooting of the two journalists happening on live tv. the suspect identified as vester lee flanagan ii, known on air as bryce williams. according to colleagues he was difficult to work with. in fact, flanagan sued two of his former stations, a civil lawsuit last year against wdbj in virginia which was dismissed. back in 2000 he sued a station in tallahassee, florida, claiming producers and managers made offensive remarks will blacks and fired him for complaining. both cases were thrown out of court. the virginia station's manager explained earlier today the end of williams' employment there. >> vester was an unhappy man.
he was sort of looking out for people to say thingsg'9/ that h could take offense to. he -- and eventually, after many incidents of his anger coming to the fore, he -- we dismissed him. and he did not take that well. we had to call the police to escort him from the building. >> let's bring in our legal panel. john loro, jonna spilbor. guys, breaking news happening right now because this 23-page manifesto that bryce williams sent to abc last night, faxed it. we have that in our possession and we are getting details. he said he was a human powder keg just=zhkñ ready to go boom every bullet apparently this morning, the initials of the charleston church shooting victims on bullets. he claims in his manifesto that
the charleston church shooting was the tipping point for him and that he was being attacked for being a gay black man. a long list of grievances. 23 pages. officials coming to the podium. legal team stand by as we're about to listen to the first press conference from police, franklin county sheriff's department in hardy, virginia. these are only mike checks right now. >> good afternoon. i'm the sheriff with the franklin county sheriff's office. i'm here today with a sorrowful heart from the tragic events that have taken place earlier this morning. i just want to make sure that, through this, we continue to keep our prayers and thoughts with the family of alison parker and aaron ward. as well as the wdbj channel 7 news family. first and foremost, i'm -- at
approximately 1:30 p.m. today the suspect from this incident, the shooting, died at fairfax and nova hospital in northern virginia as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. i want to express my condolences to wdbj 7 tv for their loss this morning. we know this has been a very difficult situation to manage professionally and personally, and we sincerely appreciate their cooperation and assistance with the ongoing investigation and our search efforts. we are keeping miss vicky gardner with the smith mount lake regional chamber of comerrs in our thoughts and prayers as she continues to undergo treatment for injuries sustained in the shooting. also want to thank the residents
of franklin and bedford counties for their support and vigilance this morning as we conducted our search efforts and response in relations to this incident. the tips and information that came in from our local residents and across the commonwealth have been extremely helpful over the course of the past seven hours. the quick response of this investigation resolution are due to the dedicated and quick efforts of our public safety partners. with the bedford county sheriff's office, the virginia state police, roanoke city police department, roanoke county police department, atf, u.s. marshal service, the fbi, the virginia department of emergency management, and the rocky mountain police department. i can't begin to thank those agencies and their personnel enough for their efforts. at 6:43 a.m. today the franklin county sheriff's office received
a 911 call concerning shots fired at bridgewater plaza near smith mountain lake. a wdbj tv news crew was conducting a live interview at the plaza with miss gardner when vester lee flanagan ii, age 41, of roanoke, suddenly appeared and approached them and started shooting. alison parker, age 24, and adam ward, age 27, died at the scene. both parker and ward were residents of roanoke, virginia. let us not forget, they grew up in this area. they were part of our community. we don't want to forget that. miss gardner was transported to
the hospital, where she is being treated for non-life-threatening injuries. flanagan then fled before deputies arrived on the scene. the franklin county sheriff's office, with the assistance of the virginia state police, immediately began a search operation in the area to locate the shooting suspect. shortly before 11:00 roanoke city police department located flanagan's 2009 ford mustang at the regional -- roanoke regional airport. the mustang has been recovered as evidence. flanagan then left the airport in a chevrolet sonic that he had rented earlier in the month. during the course of the investigation, investigators were able to track the suspect as he travelled along interstate 81 and were notified local and state law enforcement along the entire interstate 81 corridor to
assist us with a lookout for a suspect vehicle. it has been confirmed already, the virginia state police then located the flanagan vehicle on interstate 66 in faquier county and took him into custody. state police will go into more we are still piecing together the time line of events leading up to this morning's shooting. flanagan was a former employee at wdbj 7. and on air went by bryce williams. multi-page fax to a national news organization in new york about this incident and our investigators now have a copy of it and it's used in the course of this investigation will be continuing. that's where we are right now. we still have a lengthy investigation to conduct, and that's our focus as we move forward. i would like now to turn over
the mike to sergeant rick garlidz with the virginia state police. >> thank you, sheriff. shortly before 11:30 a.m. this morning virginia state police trooper pam neff was on patrol he along interstate 66. her license plate reader lpr alerted to a license plate on a chevrolet sonic traveling east on 66. she followed the vehicle a short distance as troopers responded to assist her before she actived her lights. once the backup was there she )c activated emergency equipment and attempted to stop the vehicle. the driver of the sonic, vester flanagan, also known as bryce williams, refused to stop and sped away from the trooper. it was only a minute or two later when the sonic ran off the road into the median. when trooper neff approached the vehicle, she found flanagan suffering from a self-inflicted
gunshot wound. flanagan was flown from the scene to a nova fairfax hospital where he died at approximately 1:30 p.m. today. the virginia state police bureau of criminal investigation salem field office and our salem bureau field operations have been and will continue to assist the franklin county r!l$vsherif office with the investigation into shooter. sheriff. >> thank you very much, sergeant. i will try to entertain some questions that you may have at this point in time. we'll take a couple questions. yes, sir. >> reporter: how did the suspect know where the victims were? >> that is a question that we are looking into. did he know before this morning that they would be located at this remote location doing a broadcast. did he see it aired that morning, this morning, as many people were watching? we're looking into that matter,
trying to discover that. >> reporter: sheriff, why do you think the suspect did this? what was the motive for the shooting? >> not sure. we're looking into that. it's -- that he was a prior employee there. we're looking at all of those dimensions, what that may look like. but right now there has not been a motive as per se. many of you have gotten a lot of the correspondence, emails that had been sent out. it's obvious that there was this gentleman was disturbed in some way of the way things had transpired at some point in his life. it would appear things were spiraling out of control, but we're still looking into that. >> reporter: you believe there was a racial component here? >> have no comment on that at >> repeat that? >> reporter: did he say anything to authorities? >> i can't answer that at this time. >> reporter: tell us a little bit, sheriff, about the
investigation. so far?ttle bit i've been able to review at this point in time, it certainly goes to show where the gentleman's mind was the night before, what was taking place there that there was some forethought given as to the chain of events that would happen. >> reporter: can you tell us about the license plate reader, how you guys were able to pick him up. the technology? or did somebody eyeball it? >> technology picked it up. the license plate reader, once a -- once a license plate is entered into the system, that reader will be able to identify that license plate when it passes. it's not state-specific, so the trooper has to do an investigation after the license plate is noticed to whether that's going to be the identity of the vehicle they're looking for. >> reporter: how instrumental were the license plate readers? >> they're a great tool. the state police has several of
them throughout the state. and it helped. of course, i haven't talked to trooper neff, but it helped in this case to identify that vehicle. >> reporter: how instrumental was the video that was aired live? >> ma'am, i'm not going to comment on that. i have not reviewed the video. i'll defer to the sheriff. it's under investigation. >> reporter: did it give you a lead as to who the person was? >> we were able to, from the investigation, once we were on scene and secured the scene, we were able to develop mr. and we went from there. >> reporter: the document, did you receive that yesterday? >> i'll have to confirm that. i'm not sure -- something that they had received it this morning. >> reporter: have you had an opportunity to speak with the general manager? >> what was the question again? >> reporter: have you had an opportunity to speak to his
former employer? >> i have no comment on that right now. i have divulged into that information at this time. >> i'm not sure about the trespassing order. i'm not sure exactly what steps they may have taken, if there was a need to at this time. >> reporter: -- when did he come into view? >> we're still looking at all possible video. i am not even really sure at individuals that were shot and killed even realized that he was there before the incident happened. >> reporter: sheriff, do you have a personal message to anyone who -- >> what was it? flanagan posted the videos himself? >> i can't confirm that, no.
>> reporter: can you tell us where the investigation goes from here? >> it's going to be a long investigation because there's a lot of components, certainly, to this investigation. and we're still right in the beginning stages of it. so it's going to be quite a while. yes. that has been -- officers have secured that area, and a search warrant will be executed there. >> reporter: if no one saw him, would you characterize it as a -- >> we're looking at video to see how that transpired. >> reporter: was it premeditated, sheriff? >> reporter: do you believe he was targeting these individuals or the station itself? >> i can't confirm that. i could sit here and second-guess or guess myself, maybe, what that would be. >> reporter: are you aware of any other threats to other employees at the station? >> not at this time. >> reporter: how long was he planning this? >> we'll take three more
questions. >> reporter: sheriff, did you know -- >> i did. it was -- thank you. it was extremely difficult this morning. i had actually -- i did a remote with miss parker and adam about three weeks ago when our schools opened up here. we did the same type of remote in rocky mount. it is really -- stopped me in my tracks this morning. like many viewers, i was watching this morning's broadcast, and couldn't understand really what was -- what was happening myself. at that time. >> reporter: this is emotional for you, sheriff. >> very emotional. >> reporter: a lot of people at the scene thought it was an act of terror. what difference would it have made if this was a person that knew them or -- >> we're continuing to investigate is it a criminal investigation, a homicide investigation at this time.
thank you all very, very much. please, as we said before, continue to keep these families in your prayers. >> reporter: sheriff, thanks so much. >> we've been listening to the live press conference from the franklin county sheriff's department. you're hearing that he was actually watching the broadcast this morning when the shootings happened. we learned now that the suspected killer, bryce williams, has passed away at the hospital from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. there were questions about whether or not this was premeditated and what was in the manifesto that was sent to abc news. let's go back to our legal panel. john and jonna. the question was asked at the press conference whether or not it was premeditated. based on this manifesto, some of it that we've been reading, you would answer yes, would you not, jonna? >> a thousand percent premeditated. he might have been planning this since the time he got let go from the station, which he sued them over a year ago. he has had a lot of time to sit
and think about what he wanted to do to make himself a victim. he basically studied every other high-profile shooting in recent past and puts that in his manifesto. this is a copy-cat crime for retribution according to him. it's sick and disgusting. >> he says in part of it, john, that i am a human powder keg for a while just waiting to go boom. apparently this was the way in which the trigger was the22ñ charleston church shootings. he also said that he was facing discrimination, in his mind, for being a gay black man. >> let's make one thing clear when you read this manifesto, this is a sick, very sick, individual. this is somebody who believes he's getting messages from jehovah, who is telling him how to act. this is not a rational human being. i think part of the investigation will be focused on what kind of behavioral health care was he getting, was he under the supervision of anybody, was he making threats, did people know about it.
clearly this is somebody who was acting out and people have to know about it. >> okay. was there any way, just to take another turn for a minute, that when he was driving away and he was posting those video of actually the videos he had taken of the murders, would there be a way through his cellphone for investigators to know exactly where he was, even if he had his location services turned off? >> it might be tough unless authorities knew what his phone number -- and perhaps they could have called the station and found out what his cell phone number was. it might have been a long shot and in such a short time span where authorities could find out where he was shortly after the crime. now they'll have all that information. sounds like he shot himself while he was driving down the road. >> yeah. because then the car crashed. he was on his way towards d.c., by seems a little strange. it was obvious he wanted everyone to know who he was. more about this manifesto that i want to tell you about. new details. 23 pages sent to abc news, handed over to police now.
the fax sent two hours after the shooting. it was originally reported that it might have gone in late last night. now, time stamp was about 8:30 a.m. eastern time. another call, then, was received by williams saying police were after him. he called in to abc news today about 10:00 a.m. eastern time. abc reporting williamsvt0ñ said his papers that this attack was a long time coming and that he suffered hatred from black men and white females. he praised the virginia tech shooter as well as the columbine shooters. he writes that his tipping point was the charleston church shootings, that he bought a gun two days after that happened. on the bullets today that he fired he reportedly carved the initials of the victims of that shooting. they are on your screen right now. bryce williams claims in his so-called suicide note for friends and family that he is angry and had every right to be. a man looking for peace when he leaves this earth.
he also wrote this, that he has a human powder keg waiting to go boom. so obviously, back to the lawyers, he had studied these other cases. he basically said something really grotesque, that he got nearly double the amount the columbine shooters did when he was talking about the virginia tech mass shooting. >> i can't wrap my mind around any of this. as john mentioned, what was he doing for the last year? i mean, the employer did what they had to do. they said, look, we have a difficult employee. he filed a lawsuit with the eoc. it's investigated. everything is dismissed. they let him go. what happened over this last year that turned him -- you can't do this in a vacuum. >> he had a history. he had filed another case against another station in jacksonville, florida, or tallahassee, florida, right, john? >> it wasn't just the lawsuits. the people who knew him said he was very angry, disturbed,
someone that didn't get along with people. antisocial. this was a long time coming. if i am the investigator, i want to look at his history, his pattern, his interactions with people. this didn't come out of nowhere. this is a deeply troubled person who has probably fallen through the rails somewhere and has not been picked up by society in terms of being treated for this illness. >> if you look on linked n, he had a long series of jobs in which he did not stay very long in every post except one position where he was there seven years, but it wasn't on television. >> he staged this like a news reporter. >> what do you mean? >> he staged this. he had his equipment ready. he premeditated how it would look. he tweeted it. this was his news story before he committed suicide. >> he was going out in a blaze of disgrace. >> he writes he wanted to leave this earth in peace. maybe in his own demented mind. jonna and john, thank you. >> thank you. local journalists often move around a lot early in their
continuing coverage now of the breaking news that's been happening all day here on fox. the suspect is now dead. as claims of racism and a personal vendetta against a news station being looked at as the motive behind bryce williams allegedly killing alison parker and her camera man adam ward earlier this morning. alison was interviewing this woman from the local chamber of commerce when shots rang out on tv. peter doocy back with us now live from hardy, virginia. so peter, you had just arrived there in hardy, and then that press conference happened. what did we learn? >> reporter: gretchen, two big
headlines from the press conference. first, they are not talking about this flanagan character like he is just accused of doing this. they are saying that this was something that he planned to do. this was a pre-planned attack. that is headline number one. headline number two, that he is now dead and that he succumbed to a self-inflicted gunshot wound at a hospital in northern virginia almost four hours north of here. listen to this from the sheriff. >> at approximately 1:30 p.m. today the suspect from this incident, the shooting, died at fairfax and nova hospital in northern virginia as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. >> reporter: the sheriff also spoke about how he worked with this reporter and this photographer to do a talk-back just a few weeks ago. that gives you a sense of how tightly knit the community is.
the story they were covering this morning was light, about tourism by the side of a beautiful lake. obviously their murder has become a story as horrible, and we wish -- we wish the station nothing but the best, and that is kind of the sentiment coming from law enforcement as well. >> no doubt. peter doocy live for us in virginia. thank you. an outpouring of grief and sadness as friends remember the two journalists murdered during the live, on-air interview. joining me now is someone who worked with alison parker before she was hired by wdbj in virginia. it is anna. you are the news anchor in north carolina. thank you for being with us. i know you worked together with alison. tell us how you knew alison and what she was like. >> yeah. good afternoon, gretchen. it's been a very strange day. and i had the privilege -- i do want to say this before anything. on behalf of everyone from my tv station, wcti news channel 12 in
newburn, north carolina. we're thinking of alison's parents, her co-workers, her friends and everybody who had to watch what happened unfold on tv today. nobody should have to go through anything like this. and i had the privilege, along with my colleagues, of watching alison come out of college. there are a couple types of reporters in this world, you can attest to that. alison was the reporter that wanted to get to the top and wanted to compete the right way with style and grace, and bubbly. she was the kind of girl you would want your -- if i ever had a daughter, i would want her to be like, she was the kind of girl you want your child to be friends with. like your sister. she was the all-american girl. madison. when she reported for us she was
stationed at our jacksonville bureau in north carolina. which is a heavy military area. she had a very tough area right out of college and she tackled which is why stayed with us for two years and moved to a bigger market in virginia. that's where her community was. her friends and family, where she grew up. that haunts us a little bit today. to think that, alongside the sheriff who was watching the coverage, who was always watching closely and had to endure the live moments on tv. >> one of the things about the television business is that, in order to be promoted you move to a bigger city, so many of us have developed many friendships along the way. you were one of her close friends, anna. thank you for your time. breaking news now because the virginia state police now at the scene of the crime giving an update.
let's go live there. >> -- possible vehicles involved. we had agents -- we had troopers and other law enforcement agencies all along i-81, 64, and 66 corridor being on the lookout for this vehicle. at approximately 11:20 a.m., trooper p.m. neff, who is out of the winchester office, was stationed at i-66 and i-81 interchange. she was monitoring traffic with an lpr unit equipped in her vehicle, which is a tag reader. at approximately that time, she registered a hit on a possible suspect vehicle passing her eastbound on i-66. she then pulled out, searched for the vehicle, and located visually at 11:24 a.m. at the eight-mile marker. after getting visual confirmation of the vehicle, she radioed in and awaited backup to
help her with a traffic stop on the suspect vehicle. after other units arrived, a traffic stop was initiated at the 15.6 mile marker. at that time the only occupant of the vehicle did not slow and did not stop for police vehicles. it then continued on, and it subsequently ran off the left side of the roadway at the 17.1 mile marker and struck an embankment. officers then approached the vehicle and found the lone occupant had suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound. the suspect was later flown to a nova hospital with life-threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at 1:26 p.m., this date. suspect is identified as vester lee flanagan ii, age 41, from roanoke. he is believed to be the prime
suspect in the shooting in that area. down in franklin. agencies that assisted the virginia state police. it's currently under investigation by the virginia state police and our bureau of criminal investigations. the faquier sheriff's department, atf, the u.s. marshal's service, virginia v-dot. and also fire and rescue units from faquier and warren county. from lyndon, marshall, upperville and orleans. fire and rescue companies. also, all the other law enforcement agencies along i-81 assisted in our lookout for this vehicle. that's the end of my statement on that. >> reporter: did you find any weapons in that car?
>> i cannot go into any of the details. i haven't been given any further information than this at this time. it's continuing. it's an ongoing investigation. >> reporter: they told us down south at the news conference about being able to track that vehicle in some way. can you tell us anything about that? >> i know we were getting different reports. we were also getting different updates on different types of vehicles that possibly were involved. >> reporter: was it a rental car with like a lo-jack? >> you would have to talk to them about those details, how we were given that information. >> reporter: where in the body did he shoot himself? >> i can't go into those details at this time because i don't know. it's trooper p.m. neff. p as in paul, m as in mary, neff, n-e-f-f. she is cleared from the scene. she has to stop and she is going to bring herself and her vehicle
equipment if you're interested in that. >> reporter: can you talk to us about the kind of work your people did. >> once we mobilized and we got information of where the suspect vehicle was possibly traveling, we had troopers all along the t along the interstate systems monitoring not only us but all of the other law enforcement agencies in the area were vehicles that would possibly look suspect. >> tell us about some of the radio traffic. it sounded like an incredibly professional job that at one point they talked about the guy having something in his right hand. >> yeah, we were getting all kinds of information while they were mondaying to are. we had troopers -- we came up on situations at one point it was coming up on a work zone. and that was all taken into consideration, where the traffic stop was going to be initiated. by that time, he knew that we were in the area and following him. and like i said, we preplanned everything so nobody would be hurt. >> reporter: but he wouldn't
stop, would he? >> he would not stop, no. >> reporter: that's when he went into the ditch? >> yes. >> reporter: and that's when -- >> i don't know the sweequence events. all i know the defense is that we were behind the vehicle attempting to stop it when it went into the median and subsequently when they approached, they found out he had a self-inflicted gunshot wound. >> reporter: you were trying to stop him and he wouldn't stop? >> that's correct. >> reporter: it wasn't much of a chase. >> no. >> reporter: two miles? >> less than two miles. >> reporter: do you have the make and model of that car? >> i don't know. >> reporter: was he driving erratically? >> i don't have any information to that. we were setting up to do a traffic stop on him. >> reporter: were you using dash cameras? >> yes, but they're not releasable. >> reporter: [ inaudible ] that he was headed to the d.c. metro area? >> i can't go into those details. that was information we were getting from franklin county. >> reporter: do you know where he was shot? >> i do not. >> reporter: is there any evidence in that vehicle associated as to where he was going? >> i have no idea.
it's still being processed. it's still an ongoing investigation, and we're not going to go into those details at the time. >> reporter: can you tell me if there was anything else of interest found in the vehicle? >> i don't know. >> reporter: and you don't know if he shot himself before or after -- >> there again, the sequence of events is all i have is the sequence that i've given you. any other further details are still part of our investigation. >> reporter: how much damage was there to the vehicle? >> okay. it looked to be minimal to me. all right. all right. that's it. if y'all want to stand by, i've got trooper neff coming up. and corinne gellar will probably be sending out copies of what they released down in franklin in reference to their press conference that occurred at 2:00. thank you. >> all right. so we've been listening to the live press conference, virginia state police, they were talking about how the trooper had a tag meter and was able to get the license plate, ordered for backup in order to make that stop when the suspect, bryce williams, who has since passed
away. the ceo of the security group is with me in studio now. is in a hate crime? >> no. to the actions that he displayed from the manifesto to the time he was terminated in 2013. >> but it says in the manifesto that he wrote 2 pages and facts to abc news and now in the hands of fox. he talks about race a lot. he put the initials of the charleston church shooting victims on the bullets that he used today. he praised the virginia tech mass killer, the columbine high school killers. he says he was being attacked for being a gay black man. he shot three white people today. >> right. >> why is that not a hate crime? >> well, because of the fact that the workplace violence offender is clearly delusional. they make up their own sense of reality and they struggle with their sense of identity. so they don't like who they are. they make up something that will envision them as a victim, as the quintessential victim. it's a finger pointing. now, hate crime is something where he clearly was motivated
by sense of race, color or creed. >> but he was. he says that the charleston church shootings were his tipping point. >> right. the tipping point for attention seeking. he saw the attention that was received from that shooter all over the country. and that particular shooter was glorified on the news, in his eyes. that's why he picked this time of the day to shoot these two people. >> you say he's not a sociopath and that was this foreseeable. >> clearly foreseeable. when investigators go back to 2013 and they start examining the employer's records, the disciplinary records, the performance appraisals, everything that was said about him, and you start compiling that as the behavioral profile of the individual, you look at the violence continuum or the signs, these lead up to this particular act. they're clearly foreseeable. >> all right. so where do we go from here with regard to security for reporters who are out on the road and covering stories in dangerous situations 24/7? >> all right. we're exceptionally good at wake-up calls.
we've been better at hitting the snooze button. we know that reporters are in very precarious situations oftentimes, and you know that better than i do. and the fact is that studios need to do a much better job for providing security for reporters stuck in violent situations. now, this wasn't even violent. >> no. >> but it was foreseeable of the fact that this guy was fired for anger and a variety of other reasons. >> yeah, but it was more than two years ago. >> i know, but that's just it, gretchen. the trend over the last five years. look at the empire state building shooting. that guy had been fired seven years ago and came back. >> thanks for your expertise. appreciate it. more on our continuing coverage of the shooting of a young reporter and a journalist when we return.
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rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery, but there's a pastor who has had communication with her husband who says that she is doing well now. she is in stable condition, has a long road ahead of her, but she will be survive. time now for my take. being a local news reporter and photographer can be a grueling job of long hours and little pay. it's all about paying your dues and gaining experience. sometimes doing the job also involves danger, whether reporters are reporting from dangerous areas like war zones or just dangerous areas throughout america. i think any reporter who's worked in the field can share stories of being scared or feeling uncomfortable about their own personal safety from time to time. or even being shot at which happened to me at my first tv job in richmond, virginia. i was lucky. i was not harmed. but today as we remember alison parker and adam ward in this new picture just coming into fox,
two young tv employees who lost their lives so senselessly. let's also think about all the other reporters in the field who on a daily basis may be facing danger for just doing their jobs. you can always get my take on my facebook page and at foxnews.com. thanks for being part of a tough real story today. i'm gretchen carlson. here's shep. >> all that's happened throughout this day. first, though, the killer is dead. and this morning after the executions, before he killed himself, he faxed 23 pages he had written to abc news here in new york. so why did he do it? we'll go through what he wrote with a psychologist. also, what we've learned about the assassin, the two people he killed, and how their friends and loved ones are remembering them. plus we're watching the markets today as wall street tries to snap a six-day losing streak, and see, it looks pretty good, but this time yesterday it looked pretty good, and whoa, it was not. today maybe the dow can hold on in this last hour of trading. we'll wat i