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BOILING SPRINGS LAKE, NC (AP) -- A police officer was shot with his own weapon and killed early Tuesday when a struggle ensued after he learned the driver he stopped was wanted on a probation violation, authorities said.

Officer Mitch Prince, 36, was killed during a traffic stop on N.C. 87 shortly after 1 a.m., said Boiling Springs Lake police Chief Richard White.

White said Prince learned the driver was wanted for a probation violation in Alamance county when he radioed in his name and date of birth. When Prince tried to arrest the man, the two struggled and the driver got Prince's firearm, White said.

Prince was shot three times. In addition, the driver fired at officers from Southport and Oak Island who had responded. Neither was hit, White said.

Darrell Wayne Maness, 19, was charged with first-degree murder in Prince's death, White said. He was arrested in the crawl space of a mobile home, White said.

Maness' probation violation arose from a conviction for marijuana delivery, the chief said.

The eight-officer police department was devastated by Prince's death, White said. "We're a close family," he said.

Prince, who lived in Brunswick county, was married with two small children. He was the first Boiling Springs Lake officer to die in the line of duty, White said, and possibly the first in Brunswick County since 1914.
 
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