News Release

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Trooper Shane Jacobs
Public Affairs Officer
Kentucky State Police
Post 10, Harlan
(606) 573-3131
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Two Male Juveniles Charge with Murder Of Police Officer and Other Charges

Date of News Release: 01/11/2008

(Pineville, KY) - The two male juvenile subjects that were involved with the death of Deputy Sean Pursifull of the Bell County Sheriffs Office will be appearing today (1/11/2007) for arraignment in Bell District Court.

The 17-year-old male juvenile from New Castle, Delaware has been charged with Murder of a Police Officer, Assault of a Service Animal, Speeding, Fleeing and Evading, Theft By Unlawful Taking and No Operators License. The 16-year-old male juvenile from Lincoln University, Pennsylvania has been charged with Murder of a Police Officer and Assault of a Service Animal.

While attempting to stop the suspect vehicle, Kentucky State Troopers from Post 10 Harlan were informed that the vehicle tag information linked the suspect vehicle to the 16-year-old juvenile passenger, who had been reported missing in Pennsylvania.

This incident is still under investigation by Detective Mitchell Williams and Lieutenant P.J. Burnett Kentucky State Police Post 10 Harlan.

Original Press Release Below:


Date of News Release: 01/10/2008

(Page, KY) - On 01/10/08 at 12:35 a.m. Kentucky State Police Post 10 Harlan received a complaint of a gas drive-off from the Exxon gas station located in Baxter, KY.

Trooper Rob Farley and Trooper Ken Abner observed the suspect vehicle traveling south on US 119 at 71mph in a 55mph zone. Trooper Farley and Trooper Abner attempted to stop the black 2002 Mazda and a pursuit ensued. The pursuit traveled south on US 119 and entered into Bell County. Deputy Anthony Sean Pursifull age 31 of the Bell County Sheriffs Department and his K-9 King were standing by off of the roadway on the northbound side of US 119 to assist Post 10 KSP units with the pursuit. The operator of the 2002 Mazda, a juvenile age 17 from Delaware, drove across the centerline off of the northbound side of US 119 and struck Deputy Pursifulls 2004 Ford police vehicle in the right side, causing fatal injury to Deputy Pursifull and his K-9 King.

The juvenile operator and his passenger, a juvenile age 16 from Pennsylvania, sustained minor injury and were transported to Pineville Community Hospital. Both juvenile subjects were released from the hospital and lodged in the Adair County Juvenile Detention Center. Charges are pending on both juvenile subjects.

Assisting at the scene was the Bell County Fire Department, Bell County Deputy Coroner Bill Bisceglia, Bell EMS, Post 10 Detective Mike Cornett and Seargent Damon Gayheart. This incident is still under investigation by Lieutenant P.J. Burnett Kentucky State Police Post 10 Harlan.

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