Helicopter footage shows troopers' 2017 pursuit of Charlottesville murderer

Troopers tragically died just hours later

By Ashley Curtis - Digital Content Producer

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Newly released footage captured just hours before a helicopter crash that killed two state troopers is helping put together the pieces of another deadly crash.

During the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Lt. H. Jay Cullen and Trooper-Pilot Berke M.M. Bates died when their helicopter crashed.

Video they captured just hours before they died shows the moment James Fields murdered Heather Heyer by driving his car through a crowd of protesters at the rally.

"Oh my God, that car just drove through them," one trooper said to the other.

The view from above shows the moment the troopers see the attack and then communicate with law enforcement on the ground, initiating the chase for Fields.

The chase unfolded as Fields continued driving to evade police, who were aided by the troopers' aerial view.

Fields eventually pulled over.

Hours later, the helicopter began to spin, ultimately crashing to the ground and killing Cullen and Bates.

Copyright 2019 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.