Suspect identified in Nicholas County deputy shooting death

BIRCH RIVER, W.Va. — A suspect who survived a deadly shooting with Nicholas County deputies has been identified and taken into custody.

Brent Tyler Kelly (WVRJ)

Brent Tyler Kelly, 28, was booked into the Central Regional Jail in Flatwoods early Saturday morning. Kelly is charged with first degree murder.

The shooting happened Friday night in the Birch River area. Two Nicholas County deputies were shot while trying to execute a warrant. One deputy died. The second deputy was shot in the leg.

An unidentified suspect was killed. Kelly, the second suspect, was taken into custody.

The name of the deputy who was killed and deputy who was injured have not been released.

The injured deputy is recovering at Summersville Regional Medical Center.

Gov. Jim Justice was among those to confirm the death and injury in a social media post.

Former Nicholas County Senator Greg Boso also posted on social media that one of the deputies had died.

“Tonight we mourn for a fallen law enforcement officer lost in the line of duty, a good friend,” Boso wrote. “Please join me as we pray, too, for another wounded #LEO. Please pray for their families.”

A suspect was killed and a second suspect taken into custody after the shootout, state police said.

State Senate Minority Leader Stephen Baldwin described it as a “deadly” active shooting incident in a social media post.

Del. Heather Tully, R-Nicholas, told MetroNews the situation is a tragic blow to a tight community.

“We are very concerned. We are a close-knit group of folks. We offer our prayers to the families,” Tully said.

The Nicholas County Sheriff’s Department tragically lost a recently hired deputy last month.

Travis Lawson, 22, of Nettie, died on May 10 in an off-duty motorcycle crash. The crash occurred on state Route 39 at Nettie.

Friday night’s death marks the second on-duty shooting death of a Nicholas County deputy in the last 20-plus years. Deputy William Giacomo was shot and killed by a man he was processing for a DUI in September 2000.

Giacomo was 28.

State police investigators are expected to release more information about Friday evening’s shooting sometime Saturday.

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