Archive for the ‘VA’ Category

Virginia: No charges against Suffolk store owner who shot suspect

July 19, 2009

Whaleyville, Virginia

From WVEC of July 16, 2009

No charges against Suffolk store owner who shot suspect

No charges will be filed against a man who shot and killed a would-be robber in his store, the Suffolk commonwealth’s attorney announced Thursday.

On the morning on June 21, the alarm went off at James Durden’s Whaleyville store – J&L Food Mart.

Durden, who lives close by, grabbed a gun and went to the store. His brother told 13News that Durden opened fire because he thought the man pointed a gun at him.

That man, identified as Ernest Scott Roop, was struck four times.

Detectives determined Roop was wearing camouflage clothing with his face concealed in a “ninjna” style fashion. They also said Roop had a hunting knife and crowbar and was wearing heavy construction gloves.

In the letter to Police Chief Thomas Bennett, C. Phillip Ferguson stated, “Mr. Durden was confronted with a very dangerous situation created by Roop and was legally justified in using deadly force as he genuinely believed that Roop had a firearm and that his own life was in danger.

In addition, from a practical standpoint, convinced that a Suffolk jury would not convict Mr. Durden of criminal misconduct under the facts of this case.

Therefore, this Office declines to prosecute any charges against Mr. Durden.”


Virginia: Two shot in South Richmond store

July 12, 2009

Richmond, Virginia

From the Times Dispatch of July 12, 2009

Two shot in South Richmond store

A gunman who had wounded a shopkeeper and opened fire on several customers was stopped yesterday when another man shot him at the store in South Richmond, authorities said.

The violent attempted robbery took place shortly after 1 p.m. at the Golden Food Market at 2701 Jefferson Davis Highway, the same store where another man was shot last month — and only three blocks from the scene of another robbery in June that left a shopkeeper dead.

Owners of as many as a dozen Jefferson Davis-area businesses flocked to the scene of the shooting, and many were rattled by such a brazen daylight attack, said Councilwoman Reva Trammell, whose 8th District includes the Jefferson Davis corridor.

Trammell, who arrived outside the store shortly after yesterday’s shootings, described a frenzied scene. One man told Trammell that the man who had shot the robber was a guardian angel.

“Whoever did it probably saved their lives in there,” Trammell said of the shooter.

Police did not identify anyone involved in yesterday’s shootings.

The man who shot the robber is a friend of the store owner, and he was wearing a holster with a Western-style revolver, said Managing Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Tracy Thorne-Begland.

After the suspect shot the store owner and opened fire on patrons, the owner’s friend shot the suspect once in the torso, took his gun and called police, Thorne-Begland said.

Thorne-Begland said it appeared that the shooting of the suspect was justified, although he emphasized that the investigation was in the early stages.

Police said they expect to file charges against the suspect.

The store owner’s injuries did not appear life-threatening, authorities said, but the gunman’s injuries were said to be life-threatening. No one else was hurt.

Anthony Gregory, who lives near Golden Food, said he was in the store about 15 minutes before the shootings, and that while he was there, he saw a man with a baby making a purchase.

Gregory said the owner told the baby, “Welcome to the world. This is a dangerous world, so be careful. But don’t worry, God will protect you.”

Police Cmdr. Steve Drew said officers had been patrolling up and down Jefferson Davis yesterday and recently have bolstered their presence in the area. He said it was unusual for a commercial robbery to happen so early in the day.

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch of July 15, 2009

Richmond Store owner grateful for man who shot robber

Three days after Mustapha Kassou was shot in an attempted robbery in his store in South Richmond, he said that he owed his life to the man who ended the ordeal by shooting the robber.

Yesterday, Kassou returned to Golden Food Market on Jefferson Davis Highway for the first time since he was shot there Saturday afternoon.

Kassou said the masked robber walked into the store shortly after 1 p.m. and seemed startled to see about eight people inside. The robber told everyone to get on the floor, and then he fired at Kassou and hit him twice, he said.

“When the guy shot me, I was waiting for him to finish me,” Kassou said. “I was knocked down behind the cash register.”

The other armed man pulled a six-shot revolver from his holster and told the robber to drop his weapon, Kassou said. When he didn’t, authorities say, the man shot the robber once in the torso, took the robber’s gun and called police.

Witnesses told police it appeared the robber ran out of bullets and tried to reload. Some people in the store told the man to finish off the robber, witnesses reported.

“Everyone was telling him to kill him,” Kassou said, “but he said, ‘I can’t do it.'”

Saturday’s incident was the second such shooting at the store in a month.

The two shootings at Golden Food and the fatal shooting of a shopkeeper last month in another store just blocks away have alarmed some nearby residents, although police say the number of violent crimes along the Jefferson Davis corridor has been declining since May.

Councilwoman Reva Trammell, whose 8th District includes the corridor, and police Cmdr. Steve Drew will hold a public safety meeting for Jeff Davis-area business owners tonight from 6 to 8 at the Satellite Restaurant, 4000 Jefferson Davis Highway.

Kassou was released from the hospital Sunday, but he was limping and in obvious pain yesterday. He sat inside his store with family members, but he kept the front door locked. He said the shootings have made him scared of almost everyone.

He said he was struggling with whether he should reopen the store. He does not know how he would support his wife and two children if he chooses to keep the store closed.

Kassou said he is considering returning to his native Morocco. He said he is an American citizen and has lived here about 20 years and loves this country.

“It’s not worth it anymore,” he said, adding that he will arm himself if he reopens the store.

Kassou said he still is alive because of God — and because of the man who drew a .45-caliber Western-style revolver and ended Saturday’s robbery by shooting the gunman.

“He saved a lot of lives,” Kassou said. “He was like an angel who came to save everybody.”

Authorities say the robber was wounded after he shot Kassou and fired on customers.

Neither Kassou nor the police would identify the man who shot the robber. Authorities said an initial investigation indicates the man acted lawfully when he shot the robber.

Police have charged James Grooms III, 30, of South Richmond with attempted robbery, use of a firearm and possession of a firearm by a felon.

He remained in critical condition last night at VCU Medical Center.

A woman who said she is one of Grooms’ relatives declined to comment when reached by phone yesterday.

Norfolk, Virginia Motel Robbers Shot By Victim

June 12, 2009

Norfolk, Virginia

From June 12, 2009 WAVY channel 10:

NORFOLK, Va. – An attempted robbery led to a gunfight at a Norfolk motel Thursday. Three suspects, one armed with a handgun, stormed into a room at the Econo Lodge. Much to the surprise of the suspected criminals, one of the victims was also carrying a gun.

Police say two of the suspects were shot by the victim. One of the suspects died at the scene, the other was transported to a local hospital where he remains in critical condition.

The suspect who died has been identified as 22-year-old Dante Cooley of Virginia Beach. Police have not yet released the names of the other two suspects, one of which fled the scene and remains on the run.

The victim, who was also shot by one of the suspects and transported to the hospital is expected to recover.

UPDATE: From the June 13, 2009 Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot:

A second man has died as the result of a gunfight inside a motel room, and police said Friday that an attempted robbery appeared to be what set things off.

Trevor L. Pauley, 20, of Norfolk had been hospitalized in grave condition after the incident early Thursday at the Econo Lodge at 865 N. Military Hwy. A Sentara Norfolk General Hospital spokeswoman said Pauley died about 1:45 a.m. Friday.

Police said Pauley was one of three men, at least one of whom was armed, who forced their way shortly before 2:15 a.m. Thursday into a room occupied by two men, one of whom legally had a weapon.

Virginia: Police: Man Shoots Intruder

April 14, 2009

Botetourt County, Virginia

From WSET of April 11, 2009

Police: Man Shoots Intruder

Police say a Botetourt County man shot and killed another man who broke into his home Friday night. It happened on Houston Mines Road in the Nace area of the county. Police say the intruder was able to get into the home and that’s when the resident shot him. But first police say he secured family members in a locked bedroom. The Sheriff’s Department is not releasing the resident’s identity. But deputies say someone showed up at the home at around 10:40 Friday night yelling and threatening to break in. The resident called 911 and loaded his 12-gauge shotgun. We’re told he only fired after the intruder used a patio chair to break-in through a glass sliding door. Joel Branscomb, Commonwealth’s Attorney – “Those are circumstances that would make it a justifiable homicide. Now, we will review it and make sure that’s what happened.” Carrie May, Neighbor – “If you are breaking into my house, you are breaking the law. And on top of that, I don’t know if you are going to threaten my life or not. So I should be able to defend myself.” We spoke with a woman at the home off-camera. She was visibly shaken and told us she could not talk about what happened. Officials have some ideas about who the intruder was but are not releasing any information until they know for sure. At this point, they don’t believe the men had any connection.

Virginia: One burglar shot, another stabbed in Woodbridge

March 17, 2009

Woodbridge, Virginia

From Inside NoVA of March 16, 2009

One burglar shot, another stabbed in Woodbridge

Police say one burglar was shot and another stabbed breaking into a Woodbridge home Sunday night.

James Baumann Jr., 28, and Jason Lewis Presley, 32, are accused in a burglary in the 15100 block of Georgia Road about 11:30 p.m. Police say one of them was armed with a knife.

The 41-year-old resident of the house heard the burglars and went to investigate, said Erika Hernandez, Prince William police spokeswoman.

When the victim saw the two men, a fight ensued. Police said the resident grabbed a knife from one of the burglars and stabbed him.

Baumann suffered stab wounds and the victim had cuts on various parts of his body, Hernandez said.

After fighting one burglar, the victim grabbed his shotgun and shot the second burglar as he attempted to run.

All three men were all taken to the hospital.

Presley and the resident were treated for their injuries. The resident was released.

Baumann remained hospitalized Monday suffering life-threatening injuries.

Presley, of 14205 Chesterfield Road in Woodbridge, was charged with burglary while armed with the intent to commit larceny.

He was held without bond and is scheduled to appear in court on April, 29.

Warrants were obtained for Baumann, of 1302 Oregon Avenue in Woodbridge, charging him with malicious wounding and burglary while armed with the intent to commit larceny.

Hernandez said an investigation is ongoing.

Virginia: 2 Arrested, 1 Still Sought in Would-be Robbery

January 15, 2009

Dumphries, Virginia

From WJLA of January 14, 2009

2 Arrested, 1 Still Sought in Would-be Robbery

An armed woman who stayed home sick from work Wednesday turned out to be a would-be robber’s worst nightmare.

Police say an alarm went off Wednesday in broad daylight in the 3300 block of Dondis Creek Drive in Dumfries, prompting the home’s owner to her basement door where she found three men trying to get inside.

“When she confronts them, the men take off and one of them returned,” said Officer Erika Hernandez, Prince William County.

That is when the woman opened fire, striking the would-be robber in the upper body. Police caught him and he was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. Police later caught the second suspect, but are still looking for the third.

“That was an experience with the cop cars and the helicopters, I was wondering what was going on,” said Joshua Washington, a neighbor.

Police say it appears the homeowner was within her rights to shoot the suspect, however, police are still investigating.

Virginia: Clerk shoots would-be robber in Halifax County

January 15, 2009

Hallifax County, Virginia

From the WDBJ of January 13, 2009

Clerk shoots would-be robber in Halifax County

A store clerk shoots a would-be robber.

According to the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office, the clerk called 911 to report an armed robbery at Max’s Grocery in Scottsburg.

The clerk told the sheriff’s office a man entered the store around 6:30 p.m. armed with a handgun and demanded money. The sheriff’s office said the clerk shot the suspect who then left on foot.

Deputies found the suspect around 8:20 p.m. in some woods near the store. He was taken to Halifax Regional Hospital with an apparent gun shot wound to the chest.

The suspect, Richard Anthony Snead, has been charged with attempted armed robbery and use of a firearm in commission of a felony.

Anyone with further information on this attempted robbery is asked to call the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office at 434-476-3334.

Virginia: Man Shoots And Kills Alleged Intruder

December 12, 2008

Arlington, Virginia

From WUSA of December 9, 2008

Man Shoots And Kills Alleged Intruder

Arlington County Police tell 9NEWS NOW that a man shot and killed an alleged home intruder.

Police say that they received a call at approximately 4 AM from a man who said that he had shot an intruder in his home and that the man could be dead.

Police say that when they arrived at the home on the 2100 block of Arlington Ridge Road, they found one man dead and that the man who called turned himself in to them.

Arlington Police are still investigating the incident and could not confirm any more details.

Virginia: Mother fends off robbers with handgun

September 30, 2008

Woodbridge, Virginia

From the Manassas Journal Messenger of September 29, 2008

Mother fends off robbers with handgun

Three would-be robbers, one armed with a pair of scissors, walked into a Woodbridge store on Saturday morning with criminal intent.

They left empty-handed and apparently more than a little frightened.

About 11:30 a.m. the three walked into Tienda Hispana Esperanza. One rushed to the counter and pointed the scissors at the owner’s neck and another grabbed her son’s arm, the family that owns the store said Monday.

But the owner, Esperanza Salazar, 36, reacted immediately.

She leaned back and reached for her handgun and pointed it at the three unknown males, the Salazar family said.

“It kind of looked like ‘The Matrix,’ ” said 14-year-old Julio Salazar, who was

working at the store with his mother that day.

One of the would-be robbers immediately ran out of the store, located on PR Business Center Drive. A second robber, who wielded the scissors, tried to run out of the store but tripped on a clothes rack and fell. He finally crawled out the front door.

The third robber paused and sat down in a folding chair, putting his hands in the air. When Esperanza Salazar told her son to call 911, the third man ran for the door and momentarily got tangled in the clothes rack before running out of the store.

All three eventually ran toward the back of the business center off Smoketown Road, according to police.

Esperanza Salazar, with her son translating for her, said that while she was nervous, she wouldn’t have let anything happen to her son.

The investigation revealed that the three had been loitering outside the store before the robbery attempt, but it was unknown for how long, said police spokeswoman Officer Erika Hernandez.

“Based on the witnesses statements, it appeared they were staking out the business,” Hernandez said.

Officers, including a K-9 unit, searched the area and surrounding businesses for roughly 2 1/2 hours but found no one, Hernandez said.

Police said the first would-be robber was described as a Latino man, 30 to 35 years old, collar-length straight hair, with a medium build and a mustache. He was wearing a green sweater with a white T-shirt underneath, a black baseball cap, black sneakers and glasses.

The second robber, who was armed with the pair of scissors, was described as a Latino man, 20 to 21 years old, with a medium build and shoulder-length curly hair, police said. He was wearing a white T-shirt, blue jeans and a black cap with letters on the back.

The third robber was described as a Latino male, between 17 and 18 years old, collar-length straight hair, with a medium build and unshaven chin. He was wearing a light brown shirt and blue jeans.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Prince William County Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS. Callers don’t have to give their names, just the information, and could earn up to a $1,000 cash re-ward.

Virginia: Robbery thwarted by pharmacist with gun

September 3, 2008

Henry County, Virginia

From the Madison Messenger of September 2, 2008

Robbery thwarted by pharmacist with gun

The Henry County Sheriff’s Office is looking for a man who attempted to rob Harder’s Pharmacy in Bassett on Saturday morning.

A white male, with his face partially covered, entered the store on Fairystone Park Highway at about 10 a.m. and demanded that the pharmacist give him all the OxyContin and pain pills in the store, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.

The pharmacist pulled a handgun and the would-be robber ran out of the store and got into the passenger seat of a vehicle parked across the street, authorities said.

The driver then pulled out and backed up the street toward Riverside Drive, the release states.

The sheriff’s office encourages anyone with information about the crime to call (276) 638-8751.