FLOYD COUNTY, KY (WOWK) – The community of Floyd County is mourning after three law enforcement officers and a K-9 were killed and three officers and a civilian were injured in a shootout in Allen on Thursday, June 30.
The tragedy left many families heartbroken, and entire communities are hurting over the devastating loss.
On Friday and Saturday, communities gathered along the roads to honor their heroes as they returned back home from Frankfort, still processing the event that shocked the entire community. Those killed in the shootout have been identified as Floyd County Deputy William Petry, Prestonsburg Police Officer Captain Ralph Frasure, Prestonsburg Police Officer Jacob Chaffins, and Floyd County K-9 Drago. Petry, Frasure and Drago all died Thursday night. Chaffins was pronounced dead Friday at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Huntington, West Virginia.
Among those injured are Constable Gary Wolfe, Floyd County Deputy Darrin Lawson and Floyd County Emergency Management Director Joe Reynolds. One other person was injured, but they have not been identified at this time.
“It’s absolutely the worst thing I’ve ever been a part of,” says Prestonsburg Police Chief Randy Woods.
A memorial was set up outside the city building in Prestonsburg.
Among those paying their respects was Seth Ousley, Officer Chaffins’ brother. Ousley spoke briefly with WOWK 13 News and says to him, all three of these men were heroes.
“They were three of the greatest men I’ve ever known. And I know that one of them was the best man I’ve ever known.”Seth Ousley, Officer Jacob Chaffins’ brother
The community is also reflecting on the alleged actions of the man accused in the shooting, 49-year-old Lance Storz. Storz is currently in jail on a $10 million bond facing multiple charges including murder. He will be back in court for a preliminary hearing on July 11.
“He’s nothing but a coward,” said Prestonsburg Mayor Les Stapleton. “And anybody with the same attitude as me knows that he is a coward.”
“I think he’s the scum of the Earth, and I’ll be there every step of the way to make sure that he can never hurt anyone’s family again,” Ousley said.
Following Chaffins’ procession, Chief Woods said it had been an emotional few days, and that these men were more than just officers, they were also his friends. Much like the rest of the community, it will take time before they can heal the scar this tragedy left.
“At this time, we’re a broken community, but a community I know that is strong and will heal.”Prestonsburg Police Chief Randy Woods
The community is also holding a vigil to honor the victims at 8 p.m. Sunday, July 3 at the Prestonsburg High School football field.