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Hero Down: Prestonsburg Police Officer Jacob Chaffins Murdered By Domestic Violence Suspect

By Sandy Malone and Holly Matkin

Allen, KY – Prestonsburg Police Officer Jacob Chaffins died on Friday from gunshot wounds sustained during a violent standoff with a domestic violence suspect in Floyd County on Thursday night.

Officers Chaffins, a three-year veteran of the police force, was one of a number of law enforcement from multiple agencies that responded to an active shooter scene in Floyd County on June 30.

The standoff began after Floyd County sheriff’s deputies arrived to serve the suspect with an emergency protective order related to a domestic violence incident that had happened earlier in the day, Mountain Top Media reported.

Floyd County Attorney Keith Bartley likened the scene on Railroad Street in Allen to a “war zone” and said it was “raining bullets,” the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.

Officer Chaffins, a U.S. Army veteran, sustained multiple gunshot wounds during the gun battle and was transported to the hospital in critical condition.

Prestonsburg police announced that Officer Chaffins was in “grave” condition in a Facebook post that announced the murder of Prestonsburg Police Captain Ralph Frasure by the same active shooter.

“Jacob Chaffins, just beginning a career in Law Enforcement, is currently in the hospital with a grieving young wife and daughter,” the post read.

Late on July 1, the Prestonsburg Police Department told the community that Officer Chaffins had succumbed to his wounds.

“You have dedicated your short time on this earth to the service of the citizens of Prestonsburg and the Commonwealth as an EMT, Fire Fighter, and Police Officer,” the Facebook post read. “You further dedicated yourself to the security of our country as a valiant soldier.”

“The lives you’ve saved since you even started policing are innumerable, and that’s how you gave your life – saving another. We will shine your light to Paisley and the world so long as we breathe,” it read. “Rest yourself, we have the watch.”

Floyd County Deputy Sheriff William Petry and Floyd County Sheriff’s K9 Drago were also murdered by the gunman, later identified as 49-year-old Lance Storz, WLEX reported.

Kentucky State Police (KSP) said four more officers and a civilian emergency management director were wounded during the standoff.

Storz was taken into custody alive hours after the standoff began, Mountain Top Media reported.

He was originally charged with two counts of murder of a police officer, five counts of attempted murder of a police officer, and one count each of attempted murder and assault of a service animal.

Officials said more charges would be added after Officer Chaffins died from his wounds, Mountain Top Media reported.

The fallen hero was escorted to the funeral home in Prestonsburg from St. Mary’s Medical Center on Saturday morning.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Prestonsburg Police Officer Jacob Chaffins, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Officer Jacob Chaffins, your life mattered.

Written by
Sandy Malone

Managing Editor - Twitter/@SandyMalone_ - Prior to joining The Police Tribune, Sandy wrote the Politics.Net column for the Wall Street Journal and was managing editor of Campaigns & Elections magazine. More recently, she was an internationally-syndicated columnist for Conde Nast (BRIDES), The Huffington Post, and Monsters and Critics. Sandy is married to a retired police captain and former SWAT commander.

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Written by Sandy Malone


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