Tuesday, February 12, 2013

County firefighter charged with abducting girlfriend, shooting handgun

By Meg Hibbert

ROANOKE COUNTY – An off-duty Roanoke County Firefighter/Paramedic is in jail without bond today after his girlfriend said he wouldn’t take her home after a party, and shot a handgun inside his truck where he was keeping her against her will.

Roanoke County Police identified the suspect as Robert Kelly Stoots, 27, who is a paid Firefighter/Paramedic at the Fort Lewis Fire Station in Glenvar. Police said the incident happened when he was off duty early Sunday morning, Feb. 10, and involved charges in the county and Salem.

Stoots’ girlfriend, who was not identified, said he drove to the parking lot of the Masons Cove Fire Department, pulled out a handgun and fired it without hitting anyone, and took away her cell phone to keep her from calling police.

Salem Police determined the couple were in Roanoke County when Stoots allegedly refused to take her home and the other alleged crimes took place.

Stoots is being held in the Western Virginia Regional Jail on six charges; abduction (holding a person against her will); brandishing a firearm, use of a firearm in commission of a felony, reckless handling of a firearm, preventing a person from making a 911 call, and assault and battery. Salem Police also charged him with driving under the influence.

Shoots has been placed on leave without pay pending further notice, Roanoke County Police said. He has been a Roanoke County Firefighter/Paramedic for two years, police said

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