PULLMAN, W.Va. (AP) _ A state trooper died today after being shot while investigating a dispute between neighbors outside this rural community, authorities said.

After Trooper Larry G. Hacker was shot Thursday night, officers who rushed to his aid had a 15-minute gun battle with Dennis Ferguson, said Col. Thom Kirk, state police superintendent.

Hacker, 34, died at a hospital where he was taken by helicopter.

Ferguson, 67, fled the shooting scene but was arrested about two hours later in a wooded area, Kirk said. Police said he would be charged with murder.

Jack Langford, 48, called troopers about 9 p.m. Thursday after Ferguson parked his truck in a spot that kept Langford from reaching his house. Langford's father, Hale, said the family had had a long-running dispute with Ferguson.

''He doesn't neighbor with anyone,'' Hale Langford said. ''The devil was in him.''