Correction: This story initially incorrectly identified the officer being chased by the naked man as a Pittsylvania County sheriff’s deputy. The story has since been changed to reflect that the officer being chased was a Virginia State Police trooper.
Pittsylvania County, VA – A suspect in a triple murder in Keeling was taken into custody after he chased and then fled police while stark naked on Tuesday (video below).
A neighbor called 911 at about 8 a.m. on Aug. 27 after he found a person dead in a driveway on Keeling Drive, WSET reported.
The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office said deputies responded to the address and discovered another adult and a child dead inside the home.
Authorities said the suspect was related to the murder victims and that he took off into the woods when police arrived, WSET reported.
Schools in the area were put on lockdown as police searched the nearby woods with K9s and neighbors were alerted to an “armed and dangerous” suspect on the loose.
WSET reported that 19-year old Matthew Bernard revealed himself to police when he burst back out of the woods, stark naked and unarmed, and ran straight past reporters who were gathered in a media staging area.
Their cameraman captured video of the naked man chasing a Virginia State Police trooper down a driveway.
The trooper, who was carrying a semi-automatic rifle as he ran away from the suspect, dashed across the street and into the yard of a church, with the naked alleged killer hot on his heels.
The video showed the trooper stopped briefly and faced off with Bernard, but the naked man kept coming at him so the trooper had to take off again.
The trooper ran in a circle on the grass and sprayed pepper spray behind him at the encroaching suspect, the video showed.
At first Bernard seemed undaunted by the pepper spray, but then he slowed down and stopped, the video showed.
A split-second later the video showed Bernard running away from the trooper he had just been chasing.
The naked suspect ran across a church parking lot and grabbed a church groundskeeper who was standing next to his pickup truck.
The video showed Bernard had an enraged look on his face as he grappled with the older man, and then grabbed him by the throat.
The trooper rushed up behind him, brandishing a collapsible baton, and administered one strike before Bernard released his victim and took off running again.
The video showed the naked suspect fled across the grass, past the church parking lot, and back onto the street.
The trooper jogged behind Bernard as the suspect ran directly at a couple more state troopers and patrol vehicles that were blocking the road, the video showed.
The video showed one of the troopers released a police K9 at the suspect as he approached their vehicles, but the dog refused to engage with the naked man.
The K9 retreated behind the trooper’s car while the trooper chased the suspect into the woods, the video showed.
More law enforcement officers arrived on the scene and Bernard was taken into custody at the edge of the woods.
The suspect resisted arrest and a Taser was deployed to subdue him, WSET reported.
It took multiple officers to apply handcuffs to the naked man, the video showed.
Pittsylvania County Sheriff Mike Taylor told reporters at a press briefing after the incident that he wasn’t releasing the names of the homicide victims until next of kin had been notified, WSET reported.
He said the bodies were being transported to the medical examiner’s office in Roanoke to be autopsied.
Sheriff Taylor said that three first-degree murder warrants had been issued but had not yet been served, according to WSET.
You can see video of the incident below: