Henry County standoff ends with man’s death

Michael T. Purdue died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, preliminary reports show

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HENRY COUNTY, Va. – An incident that started as an assault and turned into a standoff ended when authorities found the man suspected in the crimes, dead inside his home.

Michael T. Purdue was 43.

The situation started just before 10 a.m. Saturday, when a 28-year-old woman reported that her mother’s boyfriend, Purdue, was at her home in the 3200 block of Green Hill Drive, according to the Henry County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies responded to the home and spoke with the victim, who said she had been assaulted.

At one point during the attack, Purdue got out a gun and hit the victim in the head with it -- and then he choked her. Purdue threatened to commit suicide and sped off in his vehicle, but returned minutes later, deputies said.

When he came back, he didn’t enter the victim’s home.

Deputies caught up with Purdue at 10:15 a.m., as they found his vehicle at his home, in the 900 block of Dyers Store Road.

Purdue wouldn’t exit the home, so investigators from the Sheriff’s Office obtained warrants for abduction, strangulation and the use of a firearm during a felony, which are all felony charges.

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