Man charged with trying to hit deputy during two-state chase

by Kate Shunney

A Berkeley Springs man has been charged with multiple felonies after leading police on a chase that extended into Virginia and then back again into Morgan County last Tuesday evening. The charges include attempted murder of a Sheriff’s deputy.

Raymond W. Miller, 41, of Waugh Road was taken into custody on Tuesday, March 17 after running from police following an attempted traffic stop.

Deputy Dennis Jenkins of the Morgan County Sheriff’s Department had responded to the area of the Berkeley Springs Sheetz shortly before 6 p.m. for reports of a subject driving without a license. Jenkins saw Miller, whose driver’s license is suspended, pull out of the Sheetz parking lot.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Morgan County Magistrate Court, Jenkins activated his cruiser lights to signal Miller to pull over along Winchester Grade Road. Instead, Miller sped up. He continued along Route 13, turned onto Luther Michael Road, and then turned south on U.S. 522. Cpl. S.R. Smith of the West Virginia State Police joined the pursuit just minutes after it began.

Miller continued south on U.S. 522, passing several cars along a double line and forcing several vehicles out of their lane, police said. He passed along curves at a high rate of speed and drove into Frederick County, Virginia where deputies there picked up pursuit just south of the Liberty gas station.

Jenkins reported that police in Frederick County set up “stop sticks” at the intersection of U.S 522 and Route 127. Miller swerved toward a deputy there and turned toward Hampshire County, ramming the rear end of a Frederick County cruiser. Miller circled back to U.S. 522 on Sleepy Creek Grade Road, continued north toward West Virginia, then turned onto Morgan Road toward Morgan County.

According to Jenkins, Morgan County Sgt. Wade Shambaugh had set up spike strips to stop Miller’s vehicle at the intersection of Big Oak Tree Road and Timber Ridge Road. As Miller approached, he swerved toward Sgt. Shambaugh, “causing him to attempt to pull his duty weapon” and forcing him to move out of the way.

Miller followed Timber Ridge Road to Luther Michael Road, and then to Winchester Grade Road again, where Sheriff K.C. Bohrer attempted to stop Miller by striking his vehicle. A second attempt caused Miller to lose control of his pickup truck and strike a tree in the area of Mt. Olivet Church.

According to police, Miller got out of his wrecked truck and tried to escape on foot across the church graveyard. Deputy Jenkins chased Miller down and took him into custody.

Miller was later admitted to Berkeley Medical Center with injuries related to the incident.

He was charged with fleeing DUI, fleeing DUI with reckless disregard, attempted murder and failure to register as a sex offender.

Cpl. Smith’s charges on the sex offender registry offense indicate that Miller is a lifetime sex offender and hasn’t been registered with the West Virginia State Police since April of 2019.

A press release from the Morgan County Sheriff’s Department says multiple officers from the department, the Berkeley Springs and Paw Paw police departments, West Virginia State Police and Frederick County Sheriff’s Department assisted in the apprehension of Miller.

Miller will face criminal charges in Virginia for offense committed there during his attempt to elude capture.