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Man charged with shooting Martinsville police officer found guilty

The Martinsville man who was charged with shooting a Martinsville police officer on New Year’s Day has been found guilty, according to the Henry County Circuit Court Clerk.

This comes after Martinsville police officer Michael Panos, who had been with the department for two years, was shot once in the left arm on Jan. 1, according to Martinsville City officials.

Authorities report that at about 9:40 p.m. that same day, an officer tried to pull 37-year-old Thomas Joe Braxton III; however, he was uncompliant and drove away, leading the police on a chase.

As the chase continued, Braxton jumped out of his moving truck, which rolled down an embankment, went over Joseph Martin Highway and crashed.

After police found him, authorities say the pursuit ended in shots being fired in front of the Glen Ridge Apartments.

During the exchange, both Panos and Braxton were shot.

[’You can’t even go outside sometimes’: Neighbors react to Martinsville officer-involved shooting]

On Jan. 2, Braxton was arrested on Jan. 2 on the following charges in connection to the incident:

  • One count of attempted capital murder
  • One count use of a firearm in the commission of a felony
  • One count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon
  • One count of felony eluding

On Aug. 11, Braxton was found guilty of all charges and will be sentenced on Dec. 22 at 2 p.m., according to authorities.

Source: WSLS News 10

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