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Wanted Man Staying at Friend's House Dies During Stand-off

12-12-2011 Virginia:

Martinsville, VA -- The search for a sex offender led to a standoff in Martinsville Tuesday morning and ended with the suspect's death.

Investigators responded to a house on Drewry Road in Martinsville to look for Steven Ray Bishop, 40, Tuesday morning. When they arrived, they say Bishop shot himself.

Bishop was wanted by the Virginia State Police and Patrick County Sheriff's Office for failure to register as a sex offender and failure to appear on drug distribution charges.

US Marshals, along with the Henry County Sheriff's Office and the Virginia State Police Tactical Team, searched Bishop's mobile home in Bassett. According to US Marshals, Bishop was not at the home, but they discovered an active meth lab.

They learned Bishop was at his friend's house on Drewry Road. A friend of Bishop's said that Bishop came to the house Monday to fix her daughter's car. He then spent the night, and Tuesday morning heard a knock on the door from the Police. His friend says he ran into the bedroom and shot himself, saying he would rather be dead than in jail.

Neighbors say it was all pretty chaotic.

"I woke up about 7:30 this morning hearing gunshots, but I thought I was dreaming, but it really was true. Then the police was in front of my yard and everybody was drawing guns," said Chris Barbour, a neighbor of Bishop's friend.

Bishop died at the scene. ..Source.. by Heather Rosenbaum

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