Updated joint press release from Sheriff Mike Worrell and Commonwealth Attorney Justin Griffith, of the Baptist Hollow Road incident from 1-30-23.
On Jan. 20, 2023, an employee from New River Valley Community Services was conducting a home visit to a client at a residence in the 6000 block of Baptist Hollow Road in the Hiwassee area of Pulaski County.
Shortly before 11:00 a.m., Pulaski County Joint Communications Center received the first of two 911 calls from the employee. The employee stated that he had been attacked by being stabbed multiple times by the client and proceeded to name the client.
Service was lost and the first call was disconnected.
The employee was able to call 911 a second time, and again stated that he needed help.
Deputies from Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office arrived on scene during the course of the second call, and immediately evacuated the employee to safety and secured a perimeter around the residence.
After attempting several times to get anyone inside the residence to come out, entry was made into the residence, and the client was found deceased from wounds sustained in the altercation with the employee.
During the investigation, it was determined that the employee was aggressively attacked and stabbed multiple times. The employee defended himself by fighting back and stabbed the client multiple times before being able to get off the front porch of the residence and to his vehicle.
When deputies arrived on scene, the employee was going in and out of consciousness due to blood loss from his wounds, and so they made the decision to use a Sheriff’s Office vehicle to transport the employee to a nearby ambulance.
From there, the employee was transported to a hospital in Roanoke due to the severity of his wounds.
It was felt that this was an isolated incident and there was no danger to the community at large, but out of an abundance of caution, the School Resource Officer at Snowville Elementary School was notified and extra patrols were conducted throughout the community during the course of the incident.
Pulaski County Commonwealth’s Attorney Justin Griffith has said that due to the employee exercising his right to self-defense, it was a justifiable homicide, and no charges would be filed against him.
Sheriff Worrell would like to express his sincere thanks to Virginia State Police, Radford City Police Department, and Pulaski County Public Safety for their assistance over the course of this incident.
No further information will be released at this time.