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WDBJ Roanoke Reporter Safe After Vehicle Shot

A WDBJ Roanoke, Virginia reporter found himself in the thick of a breaking story Thursday when an 18-year-old man shot at his vehicle.

“This is weird,” said Tim Saunders, the reporter at the Gray-owned CBS affiliate. “I love reporting the news. I just don’t want to be on this side of it right now.”

Saunders said he was responding to a tip around 12:30 p.m. Thursday after neighbors reported hearing gunshots inside a local home. By the time Saunders arrived, the suspect Daniel Flint, who has a history of mental illness, had been going around the neighborhood ringing doorbells with a gun in his hand.

“I saw a young man walking up the dirty road and he was carrying a rifle,” Saunders said. “Something came over me and said, ‘That’s the guy.’”

Flint fired at Saunders’ news vehicle as he drove away, he said.

Flint had a rifle on him when he was arrested, according to WDBJ, which lost two of its reporters to a shooting during a live broadcast in August, 2015.  He is charged with arson, malicious shooting of an occupied vehicle, and attempted malicious shooting of an occupied vehicle, the station said.