Bio & Incident Details
Tour: 3 years
Badge # G-151
Weapon: Handgun; .25 caliber
Offender: Sentenced to life
Trooper Bobby Coggins was shot and killed after stopping two Arkansas prison escapees in a stolen pickup truck near Hot Springs, North Carolina, on N.C. 209.
He had initiated the traffic stop after suspecting the driver was a possible DUI. After dispatchers advised Trooper Coggins that the two were escapees one of the men opened fire with a .25 caliber handgun. Trooper Coggins attempted to return fire but did not strike the suspects. The second suspect picked up Trooper Coggins gun and shot him in the head.
Both suspects were captured three days later after trackers and a bloodhound named "Brandy" forced them out of the Blue Ridge Mountains into the hands of waiting agents of the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.
Both suspects were convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life plus 93 years on May 21, 1986.
Minutes before Trooper Coggins was killed his fiancee had driven past him as he stopped the suspects.
Trooper Coggins had served with the North Carolina Highway Patrol for one year and had also served as a seasonal park ranger for the National Park Service during the previous two years. He was survived by his fiancee, brother and parents.