Man charged with eluding deputies after false report of active shooter incident in Gloucester County

Posted at 1:29 AM, Aug 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-04 01:29:41-04

GLOUCESTER Co., Va. - A "chaotic" scene that was falsely reported as an active shooter incident near a Gloucester County Walmart Monday led to charges stemming from a police chase for one man.

Around 4 p.m., officials say a man, identified as 20-year-old Ben McMurtray of Dutton, Virginia, was driving a silver Honda SUV when he stopped on Justice Drive and started to spray something on one of the speed limit signs. A deputy saw McMurtray doing this and tried to speak with him.

McMurtray then sped from the area and eluded the deputy while committing a number of traffic violations. Several other officers helped with pursuing McMurtray, who drove to a Walmart parking lot and got out of his vehicle with a knife.

With several bystanders in the area, authorities were able to subdue McMurtray without anyone getting hurt.

McMurtray was charged with Felony Evade and Elude, several traffic infractions and Disorderly Conduct.

The sheriff's office said the "very chaotic" scene was falsely reported as an active shooter incident, which led deputies to "interact with several innocent citizens" as a result of this information being sent to dispatchers.

No one was hurt during this incident.

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