Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV


March 27, 2014

Kudos to McDowell trooper

— — Congratulations are in order for  Senior Trooper J.R. Coburn of the West Virginia State Police Welch Detachment, who was awarded the department’s highest honor last week — the Medal of Valor.

Coburn was honored for his actions on July 8, 2012, in Mercer County when a suspect who was in custody stole a Bluefield Police Department cruiser. Coburn was working a contract detail in Mercer County, heard a report of the pursuit on 911 emergency dispatch and came to the aid of the two officers who were attempting to regain control of the suspect — an individual with an extensive criminal background who had reportedly vowed not to be taken into custody by law enforcement again. The suspect wrestled the service weapon from one of the patrolmen, and Coburn fatally shot the suspect before he could turn the gun on the officer.

There are now two Medal of Valor troopers in the Welch Detachment, Coburn and Sgt. C.F. Kane, detachment commander — and the only trooper in the state police that has received two Medal of Valor awards.

Having two Medal of Valor recipients in a single state police detachment is quite an honor. And it speaks well for the good job that troopers at the Welch detachment are doing. 


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