ISP: Greenfield man fired at sheriff's deputy before officer returned fire

Michael Gulley. (Photo: Indiana Department of Correction)

HENRY COUNTY, Ind. (WTHR) — State police said Thursday a Greenfield man fired a shot at a sheriff's deputy before the officer returned fire Tuesday morning.

The case is still under investigation, but that police said they had determined that Michael R. Gulley, 32, fired a shot from a 9mm handgun in the incident. The deputy then fired from his service weapon.

The shooting killed Gulley. State police said the Henry County sheriff's deputy had stopped to try to help Gulley.

ISP also said Gulley was in possession of methamphetamine at the time of the incident and was on probation for dealing and possessing a controlled substance.

13 Investigates uncovered new details about Gulley and his criminal history that may have led to the deadly confrontation. Gulley may have been afraid of being sent back to jail.

The crime scene was a dark stretch of I-70 near New Castle. Around 5 a.m. Tuesday, the sheriff's department received a call about a man dressed in all black walking down the interstate. A deputy, who has not been named, found the man.

"He offered him a ride and the gentlemen had given him his ID," said State Police Sgt. John Bowling. "Shortly after producing his ID, for a reason we might never know, he pulled out a hand gun and pointed it at the officer."

According to investigators, the deputy pulled his gun and fired, wounding Gulley. He later died at the hospital. The deputy was not injured.

Investigators found Gulley's car about two miles away, abandoned in the median.

They closed I-70 westbound for hours and backed up traffic for miles as they searched for clues and an explanation for the confrontation.

13 Investigates found that the Greenfield man has an extensive criminal history.

It includes two stints in state prisons. He recently served nearly 10 years on drug convictions.

Released in July of 2018, according to the Indiana Department of Corrections, Gulley was placed on probation.

He was recently cited in Hancock County for driving with a suspended license. Monday, Greenfield police attempted to question him about the alleged theft of his girlfriend's prescription medicine.

The deputy was not aware of Gulley's circumstances.

"A guy walking on the interstate. You are pulling up as an officer, going to offer him a ride," Sgt. Bowling explained. "And suddenly the situation turned deadly. It is a grim reminder that there is no such thing as a routine call."

The evidence gathered by Indiana State Police investigators will help determine whether the officer's actions were justified.

Henry County Sheriff Rick McCorkle said the deputy will remain on administrative leave until the investigation is complete.