Berry identified as child porn suspect who fatally shot self last week

By: Michael Campbell | Twitter: @itsthesoup
Posted: December 17, 2018 | 2:30 p.m. 

PRINCE GEORGE – Prince George Police has formally identified the man they say shot himself as officers approached him in regards to child pornography charges.

Monday, authorities identified the man as 62-year-old James Paul Berry, III, of Prince George following his death on Friday.

According to a statement from the department last Thursday afternoon, officers were called to the 3800 block of Puddledock Road just after noon in an attempt to locate a suspect wanted on an indictment related to the production of child pornography.

When the officer arrived, they observed the suspect, who remains unidentified, standing outside of his residence.

“As the officer began a dialogue with him, the suspect retrieved a handgun from his clothing,” Officer Alexis Grochmal said. “As the suspect turned away from the officer, gunfire was heard. The officer subsequently discovered the suspect lying on the ground with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.”

“The involved officer did not discharge his service weapon,” Grochmal continued in the department’s statement.

Berry was taken to the nearby Tri-Cities ER before being transferred to Chippenham Hospital where he died.

Berry was expected to return to court on December 13 for a motions hearing in connection with his July arrest on 40 counts of possessing child pornography.

Following his arrest, Berry was incarcerated at Riverside Regional Jail before being granted bond during an August hearing, something the Commonwealth argued against, with Prince George County Commonwealth’s Attorney Susan Fierro arguing at the time that Berry should have remained behind bars due to the nature and seriousness of the charges he is facing and prosecutors argued that Berry was “a flight risk because he did have resources to flee and he did not have ties to the community.”

According to police, the “Prince George Commonwealth Attorney’s Office will be working with Debra Corcoran, the defendant’s counsel concerning the disposal of the charges at this time.”

Copyright 2018 by Womack Publishing
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