Former Warren County deputies charged with killing 77-year-old man

Two former Warren County deputies, Zachary Fadely, 31, and Tyler Poe, 27, are now facing homicide charges for a low-speed chase that resulted in the death of Ralph C. Ennis, a 77-year-old Gainsville man.

On April 2, 2022, at about 1:20 a.m., Warren County police encountered Ennis on Winchester Rd. and initiated a traffic stop because he was speeding—63 in a 55 mph zone, according to Virginia State Police.

Body camera footage from a Front Royal officer, R.D. Lowery, who responded to scene but appears to have left without getting involved shows a significant police response, including an officer with a dog. The footage also shows the accused officers rough-handling Ennis.

As Lowery approaches the scene, he says, “Jesus Christ man. Just grab a hold of him,” seeming to suggest that the situation could have been contained much easier.

In his report, Lowery said dispatch advised there was a pursuit with speeds of 40 miles an hour. Dispatch said stop sticks were requested. Lowery announced he was on the way.

Lowery stated he saw when Ennis pulled the F150 to the east side of 7-Eleven and he also said he “observed a male open the driver side door of the Ford F150 with his arms down by his side. The male appeared elderly and confused.”

Lowery’s report states, “the deputy slammed the male into the camper top face first.” Another deputy got involved and Ennis “was pushed over but his legs had caught the hitch on the back of the truck.”

When Lowery got back in his vehicle, his bodycam recorded him saying, ““That was f–ing unjust and f—ing unf—king uncalled for. Jesus Christ.”

WATCH: The Bodycam Footage of Police Arresting Ennis

Ennis was reportedly transported to Warren Memorial Hospital after his arrest then to Winchester Medical Center. VSP said Ennis suffered a severe head wound and died two weeks later.

Today, VSP announced serving the two former Warren County deputies with new indictments that a grand jury handed down on April 8.

Those indictments include one felony count of homicide each for Fadely, of Shenandoah County, and Poe, of Warren County.

Both of the men have been released on bond. VSP said mugshots are not available.

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