UPDATE: Lynchburg Police say wanted man in custody after leading pursuit, crashing in James River

Lynchburg & Central Virginia News

UPDATE 8:19 a.m.: Lynchburg authorities shared additional information about the man who led a police pursuit and crashed into the James River early Monday morning before being taken into custody.

According to the Lynchburg Police Department, an officer identified a wanted subject in his vehicle while driving near Florida Avenue and Grace Street shortly before 2:30 a.m. on Monday, May 24.

The officer initiated a stop, but the driver sped away from the officer before heading onto U.S. Route 29 into Amherst County, where Amherst County deputies took over the pursuit, the department says.

However, the man ended up driving his car into the James River at Riveredge Park.

Police say the man got out of his vehicle and started swimming and wading down the river, threatening to hurt himself with the knife that he had in his hand.

Members of the Lynchburg Police Department’s Tactical Unit and Crisis Negotiation Teams, the Lynchburg Fire Department, the Monelison Volunteer Fire Department, the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office, and Virginia State Police reportedly responded to the scene.

After speaking with the man for several hours, officers took the uninjured man into custody on an Emergency Custody Order without the use of force, according to the department.

Officials say they cannot provide any other details about this individual because he was taken into custody on an Emergency Custody Order, which means sharing specific information could be a HIPAA violation.


UPDATE 6:29 a.m.: The Lynchburg Police Department says the wanted man who led a police pursuit and crashed into the James River early Monday morning is now out of the river and safely in custody.

Since the man is out of the river, crews are getting to work on removing his car from the James River.


UPDATE 5:37 a.m.: Central Virginia authorities are still trying to get a wanted man out of the James River after he crashed into the river following a police pursuit early Monday morning.

Carrie Dungan with the Lynchburg Police Department told WFXR News that the man had a warrant out of Amherst County for affixing a false or forged label to a package or receptacle containing a controlled substance, which is a Class 6 felony.

According to Dungan, the vehicle pursuit started at 2:27 a.m. near Florida and Grace Streets, but it ended at 2:41 a.m. when he crashed his car into the river at Riveredge Park in Amherst County.

Dungan says the man — who is armed with a knife — has been walking/swimming down the river ever since, refusing to come out of the water.

The Lynchburg Police Department’s crisis negotiation team and tactical units are reportedly on scene, as well as support from the Lynchburg Fire Department, Virginia State Police, the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office, and Monelison Rescue.


LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — Authorities from Lynchburg and Amherst County are currently trying to get an armed man out of the James River following a pursuit and crash near Riveredge Park early Monday morning.

The Lynchburg Police Department tweeted at 4:49 a.m. on Monday, May 24 that officers at the James River with a man who led them on a vehicle pursuit before he crashed into the river.

Police say they are currently speaking with the man — who is armed with a knife — and trying to get him to come out of the river.

The Amherst County Sheriff’s Office told WFXR News that Lynchburg Police called them in to assist. Virginia State Police are also on the scene with a helicopter, authorities say.

WFXR News has a crew on the way to the scene.

This is a developing story.

Get breaking news, weather, and sports delivered to your smartphone with the WFXR News app available on Apple and Android.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

News tips

Do you have a news tip or breaking news to share with WFXR?  Submit your tip here.

Latest News

More News

News Tip Form