West Virginia woman with pistol shoots, kills man firing at graduation party: ‘Saved several lives’

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Charleston police said no partygoers were hurt in the incident

woman in West Virginia fatally shot a man Wednesday night who had begun firing an AR-15-style rifle into a crowd of dozens. 

Charleston Police identified the man as 37-year-old Dennis Butler. 

The people were attending a birthday and graduation party outside a Renaissance Circle apartment complex. 

Butler had been at the apartment complex earlier in the evening in a vehicle and was warned to slow down because children were playing, according to authorities. 

He left but later returned and parked in front of the complex before shooting.

The woman was attending the West Virginia party. She drew a pistol and fired on Butler. 

No one attending the party was injured. 

The woman then waited for police to arrive, and she and several witnesses have cooperated with the investigation. 

“Instead of running from the threat, she engaged with the threat and saved several lives last night,” Chief of Detectives Tony Hazelett told news outlets Thursday.

Hazelett said no charges would be filed against the woman.

In an interview with MetroNews’ “Talkline” Thursday, Police Chief Tyke Hunt said Butler was a convicted felon who had “been to prison a few times.” 

Hunt said Butler illegally possessed the gun he fired, adding the matter was still under investigation. 

WSAZ said the Kanawha County Prosecutor’s Office is investigating. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

By Julia Musto

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