Army NCO with PTSD killed during shootout with police

Staff Sergeant Travis Bradley. Photo credit: Facebook

Wednesday afternoon the Harford County Sheriff’s office in Maryland were involved in shootout with a Staff Sergeant from Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Travis Boyd Bradley was on active-duty and assigned to the Army’s Research, Development and Engineering Command.  Sheriff’s Office Maj. William Davis said that Bradley was believed to be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder but this has not been confirmed by that Army.  Bradley had deployed overseas for at least two years and had been in direct engagements with combatants during war, based upon the awards displayed on his uniform.

Travis Bradley
Staff Sergeant Travis Bradley. Photo credit: Facebook

The incident began at 3:30 p.m. on March 2nd and lasted for hours until the deputies fired the fatal shots at around 6:30 p.m.

Maj. William Davis said, “all indications were that he was ready for a fight and he told us he was going to shoot it out with us.”

Before the shooting incident the officers were told by Bradley’s girlfriend that “was possibly armed with a handgun” and was suffering from PTSD.  The officers reportedly spent around thirty minutes attempted to reach Bradley via personal communication and his phone but were unable to reach him.

After their attempts to reach him, Bradley fired two rounds from a semi-automatic rifle from the back porch of his home.  Deputies moved to safe cover, set up and perimeter, and the Special Response Team of the  Special Operations Division took over command of the crime scene.  The Sheriff office’s Crisis Negotiation Team continued negotiations in an attempt “to bring the incident to a peaceful end,” according to the press release.

At about 6:30 p.m, Bradley “came out of the house and presented himself in a threatening manner, gave indication he was armed,” Davis said.

At this time deputies reportedly fired at least 20 rounds during the fatal volley with their Ar-15 rifles. The deputies have been placed on administrative leave.

Officers found several firearms at the home and believe the stated that the weapons gave “the indication that he was ready for us to make an assault.”

In an ironic twist of fate, Bradley appeared to be a supporter of the Harford Country Sheriff department as he changed his Facebook profile picture to a memorial badge for two fallen officers of the department who were murdered in the line of duty last month.

According to the Baltimore Sun, Bradley’s ex-wife’s sister, Nicole Heider, said Bradley was struggling with the loss of a friend in Iraq whose death anniversary was this week.  “He had been deemed non deployable because of his PTSD,” Heider said.

She continued to say his PTSD caused him to have problems with drinking and ultimately led to his divorce.  She reports that he called his ex-wife during the incident and said he “just wanted to die” because of the loss of his friend.

“The loss of any Soldier, regardless of the situation, is tragic,” said Maj. Gen. Bruce T. Crawford, Aberdeen Proving Ground senior commander. “Right now our thoughts, prayers and condolences are with the Soldier’s family and all those impacted by this event.”

Staff Sergeant Travis Bradley. Photo credit: Facebook
Staff Sergeant Travis Bradley. Photo credit: Facebook


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