The Science Hill man accused of shooting a McCreary County deputy sheriff as he responded to a domestic dispute has been formally charged with Attempted Murder of a Police Officer.
Mark L. Dungan, 48, of Hall Street, has also been charged by Kentucky State Police with first-degree Fleeing or Evading Police (Motor Vehicle), first-degree Wanton Endangerment (Police Officer), first-degree Criminal Mischief, Tampering with Physical Evidence, Attempted Resisting Arrest, and Convicted Felon in Possession of a Handgun.
The charges stem from an incident which began around 8 p.m. Tuesday night in the Marshes Siding community of McCreary County. McCreary County Deputy Dustin Tyler Watkins and District 3 Constable Cody Stephens were responding to a welfare check at a home on Lick Creek Road.
Upon arrival, Dep. Watkins found Dungan in a vehicle outside. As the deputy approached, Dungan allegedly fired several rounds from a handgun — striking Watkins at least once.
As he fled the scene, Dungan's vehicle struck Constable Stephens' cruiser head on but he continued on Lick Creek Road. Authorities caught up to him later in a nearby cemetery and Dungan was arrested without further incident.
According to a KSP news release, Post 11 in London was contacted by the McCreary County Sheriff's Office to assist on an officer-involved shooting at approximately 8:18 p.m.
Dep. Watkins was flown from the scene to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, where according to last report from McCreary County Sheriff Randy Waters, he was listed in critical but stable condition.
"We all hope and pray that he's going to be alright," Sheriff Waters said of his 28-year-old deputy.
While Watkins had volunteered with the McCreary County Sheriff's Office for about eight months as a special deputy, Sheriff Waters said he had just began paid duties on Monday after the McCreary County Fiscal Court had approved a fourth paid deputy for the department.
The sheriff declined to comment on the details of the shooting, citing KSP's ongoing investigation.
"The main thing is we thank the Lord for all the first responders that came together in getting him [Dep. Watkins] to UT," Sheriff Waters said.
Meanwhile, Dungan was booked into the Leslie County Detention Center at 5:01 a.m. this (Wednesday) morning. He is scheduled to be arraigned in McCreary District Court tomorrow before Judge Fred White.