Suspect In TV News Crew Shooting Dies
MONETA, Va. — The former anchor that opened fire during a live report in Virginia killing a reporter and a photographer is dead.
The suspect is 41-year-old Vester Lee Flanagan II, of Roanoke, a former anchor at the station. He went by Bryce Williams on air. Hours after the shooting Virginia State Police located Flanagan’s car and pursued him for a couple of minutes before his car crashed off the road. He was found suffering from a self-inflicted gunshot wound and was airlifted to a local hospital where he later died.
“This gentleman was disturbed at way things had turned out at some point in his life. Things were spiraling out of control,” Franklin County Sheriff W.Q. “Bill” Overton Jr. said at a news conference.
A third victim, Vicki Gardner, underwent emergency surgery and is currently recovering in stable condition with non-life threatening injuries.
Local TV station WDBJ, a CBS affiliate serving the Roanoke-Lynchburg television market, confirmed that the reporter and cameraman were fatally shot on air when a gunman opened fire during a report about tourism at a shopping center during their morning broadcast.