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State Police lieutenant, trooper-pilot killed in helicopter crash identified

State Police lieutenant, trooper-pilot killed in helicopter crash identified”

Two state police troopers were killed in the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, yesterday, as a group of white supremacists took over the college town for hate-filled rally.

The cause of the crash, which was in a wooded area near a residence on Old Farm Road, is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board, but there is no indication of foul play, state police said Saturday night.

Jay Cullen, 48, (l.), and Berke M.M. Bates, 40, (r.) died in a helicopter crash while monitoring the violent clashes in Charlottesville.

Cullen graduated from the Virginia State Police Academy in May 1994 as a member of the 90th Basic Session.

Trooper-Pilot Bates had just transferred to the Aviation Unit in July, from the State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

President Donald Trump also offered his condolences in a tweet to the "families and fellow officers of the Virginia state police who died today".

"We are deeply saddened by the loss of Jay and Berke, both of whom were our close friends and trusted members of our team", the statement said. No one on the ground was injured. "The unit fielded 3,008 flight requests in 2015".

State Police lieutenant, trooper-pilot killed in helicopter crash identified

"Jay was the greatest son a person could ever have, a great father to his two sons, a loving husband to his wife, Karen, and he was doing something that he loved."
Berke was devoted to our entire family as part of our Executive Protective Unit team for the past three years.

This is a devastating loss for their families, the Virginia State Police, and the entire commonwealth.

"He was a good trooper", Robert Bates told the Washington Post.

"Our state police and law enforcement family at large are mourning this tragic outcome to an already challenging day", said Col. W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police superintendent.

This is a developing story.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, a video posted by TMZ appears to show the helicopter crash along with its fiery aftermath.



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