Virginia Police Chief Shot Twice After Shoplifting Incident: Officials

May 10, 2021 Updated: May 10, 2021

A police chief in Virginia was shot twice after he was called to investigate a shoplifting incident in Norton.

The shooting occurred May 8 near the Walmart store on Commonwealth Drive after the Norton Police Department got a report about a shoplifter, officials said.

“As Norton Police Chief James Lane pulled up to the parking lot, he encountered a male pedestrian,” the Virginia State Police said in a press release. “The man began shooting into the chief’s vehicle, striking the chief. The chief returned fire.”

A second officer also returned fire, officials told WJHL. Both Lane and the suspect were injured in the gun battle, officials said.

“There were several units on the scene very quickly, helping secure the scene, helping provide first aid to both people that were shot, so with the tourniquets and things like that to stop the bleeding [until] rescue got here and they were transported,” Wise County Sheriff Grant Kilgore told the station.

Alan Levine, CEO of Ballad Health, confirmed Lane was shot twice.

“He was shot twice, and our team at Norton Community Hospital and Johnson City Medical Center’s trauma team are doing their work to help him and the community heal,” he wrote on Twitter.

James Dyer Buckland, 36 of Pound, Virginia, was charged with attempted capital murder and other charges, according to the station.

As of May 8, authorities said Lane was in stable condition following the shooting.

“Out of respect for the privacy of Chief Lane and his family, we would like to provide only a brief update just to let you know that Chief Lane had surgery last night and his condition is stable at this time. We continue to ask for your prayers and support,” said the City of Norton in a statement.