Fallen Virginia State Troopers Identified

Virginia State Police helicopter crashes near Charlottesville, witnesses say

A helicopter crash near Charlottesville, Virginia, where violent clashes erupted at the site of a white nationalist rally, killed two troopers, Virginia State Police said.

"Our state police and law enforcement family at-large are mourning this tragic outcome to an already challenging day", Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent, said in the statement.

The pilot, Lieutenant H. Jay Cullen, 48, is the son of a Loudon county commissioner.

The Virginia State Police helicopter was flying over the Charlottesville-area assisting with public safety at the Charlottesville protests. No one on the ground was injured, according to Fox News.

The federal transportation agency and State Police are interviewing witnesses who reported seeing the helicopter before it crashed.

Cullen is survived by his wife and two sons, while Bates is survived by his wife, a son, and a daughter, Virginia State Police confirmed.

More news: Five things Raila Odinga said during his CNN interview

President Donald Trump also offered his condolences in a tweet to the "families and fellow officers of the Virginia state police who died today".

He would have turned 41 on Sunday.

He had just transferred to the Aviation Unit as a trooper-pilot in July, the release said.

The crash happened just a few hours after a auto plowed into a crowd of people peacefully protesting against the white nationalist rally.

One individual was killed Saturday and 19 were harmed when a speeding auto pummeled into another auto that was exploring through a throng of counter-dissenters in Charlottesville, where a "Join the Right" rally of white patriot and other conservative gatherings was to happen.

Please stay with WDBJ7 for this is a developing story.

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