UPDATE: Virginia State Police announced Tuesday that an individual has been taken into custody in connection with the hatchet attack.
VSP hasn’t released the person’s name yet.
GRAYSON COUNTY, Va. (WJHL) – The Virginia State Police is searching for the man accused of injuring an off-duty trooper in a hatchet attack at a Troutdale community church on Sunday night.
According to a release, 20 people were gathered at the church in the 11000 block of Flatridge Road about 8:30 p.m.
At that time, a banging was heard on the main entrance doors.
“An off-duty Virginia State Police trooper opened the door and encountered a man and a dog standing just outside. The trooper asked if he could help and the man yelled back at him. It was at this point that the trooper observed the man was holding a hatchet. As the trooper attempted to close the door, the man swung the hatchet and struck the back of the trooper’s hand.”
The trooper got the door closed and directed the others to get to the church basement for safety.
According to investigators, the man and dog left the property, and the trooper made sure everyone got to their vehicles. The trooper reportedly could hear the suspect “yelling and howling from the woodline.”
VSP said that the trooper received “minor scratches” to his hand and received treatment at the scene.
VSP is now looking for the subject. He’s described as a white man in his 30s with long brown hair. He’s about 5’10” and has a medium build. According to the VSP, the man had a backpack and a small, black collie-mix dog. They also said he may be with an adult woman.
Those with information are asked to contact VSP at 276-228-3131 or firstname.lastname@example.org.