Mingo County sheriff shot, killed outside courthouse - Business, Government Legal News from throughout WV

Mingo County sheriff shot, killed outside courthouse

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The Mingo County sheriff known for his tough enforcement programs died April 3 after he was shot four times outside the courthouse in Williamson.

Police say Sheriff Eugene Crum was eating lunch in his car in front of the courthouse when the suspect drove up next to him, shot him and then fled the scene.

However, a deputy sitting with Crum was able to arrest Tennis Melvin Maynard, 37, who led police on a short chase that ended in Delbarton. 

The West Virginia State Police said Maynard exited the vehicle with a weapon and was shot multiple times.

State troopers are investigating the scene of Maynard's shooting and city police are investigating the scene of Crum's shooting.

Crum was known for his tough enforcement program known as Operation Zero Tolerance. Last year, the prosecutor's office saw the third highest number of felony convictions in Mingo County history.

According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, three other sheriffs in the state's history were fatally shot in the line of duty and one was killed on duty when a man set off dynamite in the Mason County Jail.

The site states that most recently, Calhoun County Sheriff Park Richards was fatally shot in 1976 when he and a state trooper were serving a warrant on a man living in a cave, the Officer Down Memorial Page states.

In 1904, Fayette County Sheriff Nehemiah Daniel was killed when he assisted Montgomery officials preserve order following the previous day's shooting of a county constable, the site states.

In 1922, Brooke County Sheriff Harding Duval was fatally shot when he responded to the scene of striking miners shooting at a mine in Cliftonville, the site says. The site states Duval and six miners were killed in the gunfire.

 Tucker County Sheriff O. Gay Hovatter was shot in 1946 while he and Sargeant Joseph Horne were arresting a man for stealing a coal truck, the site says.

Also, Mason County Sheriff Elvin Wedge died of injuries received in an explosion in the Mason County Jail in 1976. Deputy Kenneth Love and Jailer Ernest Hesson also were killed. A man entered the Mason County Jail armed with a shotgun and suitcase containing dynamite. The suspect said he wanted to spend the night with his wife, and while talking to Wedge fired into the suitcase and set off the explosion.

Love died instantly, Wedge the next day and Hesson a few days later.


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