Stanley, VA – Stanley Police Department (SPD) Officer Dominic “Nick” Winum was murdered in the line of duty during a traffic stop on Friday afternoon.
The attack occurred in the 600-block of Judy Lane at approximately 3:15 p.m. on Feb. 26, the Daily News-Record reported.
Before the 48-year-old officer was able to exit his patrol car, 29-year-old Dakota Richards got out of his vehicle and opened fire on him, according to the Virginia State Police (VSP).
Officer Winum died from his wounds at the scene, the Daily News-Record reported.
Richards fled into a nearby wooded area as fellow officers flooded the scene and began tracking him, according to the VSP.
They found him hiding in a barn in the 700-block of Marksville Road, the Daily News-Record reported.
As they closed in on him, Richards allegedly began making threatening movements, police said.
He was fatally shot by Page County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) deputies, the Daily News-Record reported.
The VSP is handling the ongoing investigation into the incident.
Officer Winum served the SPD for five years, according to the Daily News-Record.
“It doesn’t feel real,” Elkton Police Department (EPD) Chief Lynette Campbell told the paper. “I didn’t think I could cry anymore.”
Chief Campbell said “there was no better man” than Officer Winum, the Daily News-Record reported.
His close friend and former partner, VSP Trooper Brandon Tester, described Officer Winum as “a really great guy and a great officer.”
Officer Winum served the VSP for 10 years prior to joining the SPD, Trooper Tester said.
“He will be missed,” he added.
Officer Winum leaves behind his wife and four children, Trooper Tester told WHSV.
A fundraising campaign established to help his family in the wake of their loss has raised over $51,000 so far.
Officer Winum will be laid to rest on Thursday, his department said in a Facebook post.
#VSP extends its prayers & condolences to the fellow officers & family of #Stanley, #Virginia Police Officer D.J. "Nick" Winum. #RIP His loss is shared by us, too, as Officer Winum graduated the #VSP 112th Basic Session in 2006 & served w/us as a Trooper until 2016. @VaPSHS pic.twitter.com/rv4E7JlfnE
— VA State Police (@VSPPIO) February 27, 2021
I’m outside the Stanley Police Department where flowers have been placed in honor of Officer Dominic Winum, who lost is life while on duty yesterday. pic.twitter.com/GPKLW44ue5
— Jessica Wetzler (@wetzler_jessica) February 27, 2021
ACPD extends our sincere condolences to the Stanley Police Department as they mourn the line of duty death of Officer Dominic “Nick” J. Winum. Our thoughts remain with his family, friends and all who served alongside him. pic.twitter.com/YfK4tI9VZR
— ArlingtonCountyPD (@ArlingtonVaPD) February 27, 2021
Fauquier County first responders show their respect for fallen Officer Dominic “Nick” J. Winum as he makes his way home tonight. Rest In Peace brother. pic.twitter.com/6C2n17JLGy
— FauquierCoSheriff (@FauquierSheriff) February 28, 2021
HONORING THE FALLEN: #PWCPD officers from C-West were humbled to pay respects to #StanleyTownPolice Officer Dominic "Nick" Winum as his motorcade left the Manassas area this evening. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. pic.twitter.com/mYpkR8M72w
— Prince William County Police (@PWCPolice) February 28, 2021
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Stanley Police Department Officer Dominic “Nick” Winum, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Officer Dominic Winum, your life mattered.