EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSFallen Troopers Remembered On One Year Anniversary Of Their Deaths
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Leslie Rubin
Videographer: Troy Morgan
Web Producer: Bethany Simmons
Reported: Aug. 27, 2013 11:48 AM EDT
Updated: Aug. 28, 2013 9:26 PM EDT
Clay , Clay County , West Virginia
Wednesday marked one year since two Clay County state troopers were murdered during a traffic stop.
The area has since turned into a large makeshift memorial, honoring Cpl. Marshall Bailey and Trooper Eric Workman.
Roane County Deputy John Westfall and tow truck driver Frank Massey were also shot, but survived.
"It's not everyday you walk up and see something like that. You relive it over and over in your mind. Very tragic, very sensless that two good men had to die," Massey said on the anniversary of the tragedy.
One year later, and Massey is back to work at King's Trucking and Wrecker Service, still recovering from being shot in the arm. The memories of the night of August 28th, 2012 are still very fresh in his mind.
"It's just hard to put into words how it feels," he says.
"The whole time, in the back of your mind, you're thinking, okay hes going to shoot me again. Luckily, he did not, and I was able to get out of there to get help," Massey recalled.
The troopers deaths left a hole in the hearts of so many, not just in Clay County where they served their community, but an entire state mounted alongside the family and friends of Cpl. Bailey and Trooper Workman.
"Children lost their father. Their uncle, their sons. Like I said, I know these families personally. And the only thing I can is keep your thoughts and prayers with them. They really need it, especially today," Massey said.
There was no public service on Wednesday, but there will be a bridge dedication ceremony on September 12th and 2:00 p.m.
It's been one year since two West Virginia State Police troopers were shot and killed while in the line of duty.
The night of Aug. 28, 2012, Cpl. Marshall Bailey and Trooper Eric Workman, both based at the Clay County detachment of the West Virginia State Police, were responding to what appeared to be a routine traffic stop. The events that unfolded that night turned out to be anything but routine.
Luke Baber was driving under the influence along Interstate 79 northbound when Bailey and Workman pulled over his vehicle at the Wallback Park and Ride, where they called for a wrecker service.
After placing the suspect in the backseat of the cruiser, Baber somehow managed to get a hold of a 9mm pistol and shoot both troopers.
When William Massey, the driver of the tow truck arrived on the scene, he found Bailey and Workman unresponsive inside the cruiser.
Massey was able to return to his vehicle and call for help. Local, county and state authorities then launched a massive search for Baber. When officers found him a short distance from the scene, a shootout between Baber and police occurred.
Troopers said Baber took Bailey's gun after he shot the two men and could have used that in the shootout. Roane County Deputy John Westfall was shot three times and was released from the hospital the following week. Westfall was wearing a bulletproof vest, which officials credited with saving his life.
Baber was killed in the shootout. Bailey died at the scene. Workman was taken to a Charleston hospital where he died later that week.
Public funerals were held separately for Bailey and Workman at the Charleston Civic Center. Law enforcement officers from across the nation and throughout West Virginia attended the services.
This deadly shooting also sparked an Eyewitness News initiative to raise money to make sure that every deputy in West Virginia has access to a bulletproof vest. We partnered with the West Virginia Sheriffs' Association in the fall of 2012, and the "In-Vest" campaign has collected more than $40,000.
In the spring of 2012, the Legislature passed a measure requiring all 55 county sheriff's departments to provide bullet-resistant vests to deputies. That legislation went into effect July 1.
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