W.Va. trooper now involved in 2nd fatal shooting

CHARLESTON (AP) — A State Police trooper who fatally shot a man in Mercer County last weekend is under investigation for a separate fatal shooting in January.

Media outlets say Trooper J.R. Coburn is a former Mercer County sheriff’s deputy from Princeton. Authorities haven’t identified the man killed Saturday night.

The man was handcuffed inside a Bluefield police car but somehow moved his hands in front of him, climbed into the driver’s seat and fled.

The shooting occurred during a subsequent foot chase. State Police say the suspect refused to put down a weapon, and Coburn fired.

Coburn is also under investigation for shooting 34-year-old Jackie Spalding Jr., who had a rifle in a Bluewell cemetery on Jan. 29.

Prosecutor Scott Ash says he hasn’t received a State Police report in that case.

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