Virginia Beach Police Chief Admits Cops Have No Idea if Black Man Shot by Officer Was Armed


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Kevin Mohatt/Reuters

As questions swirled Saturday over the police capturing of a 25-year-old Black man throughout a number of chaotic shootings in Virginia Beach, metropolis police chief Paul Neudigate admitted to reporters late Saturday that there isn’t a bodycam footage of the confrontation—and police do not know if the person was armed.

“I don’t have a whole lot of answers,” Neudigate stated in regards to the dying of Donovan Lynch, which he stated was “still very much under investigation.”

Lynch was killed by the hands of police as officers responded to a gunfight they stated erupted whereas they had been coping with one other, unrelated capturing close by. Police stated they confronted “three separate shooting events” alongside the town’s oceanfront on Friday night time. Three males have been arrested in reference to the primary capturing of the night time, which left eight individuals injured and occurred simply minutes earlier than the second capturing.

But the circumstances of the second capturing, throughout which Lynch was killed, stay unclear. Neudigate stated solely that the incident started as a bodily altercation till a number of individuals drew weapons. One different sufferer died within the capturing, 29-year-old Desheyla Harris, whom Neudigate described as “an innocent victim struck by stray gunfire.”

Before Lynch was recognized by police because the sufferer of an officer-involved capturing, an preliminary press launch described the person killed as “an armed citizen.” But Neudigate overtly admitted late Saturday that authorities don’t really know if Lynch was armed.

Instead, Neudigate might solely say that “there was a firearm recovered in the vicinity of where this incident occurred.”

Asked by a reporter if police had proof of the gun belonging to Lynch, or of Lynch being armed on the time he was shot, Neudigate answered point-blank: “No. At this point, no.”

Neudigate additionally couldn’t say what number of instances Lynch was shot. And if anybody hoped the bodycam footage might clear issues up, the police chief stated the digital camera was not on on the time of the deadly capturing.

“There is no bodycam footage. The officer was wearing a body cam, but it was not activated,” he stated, including that the rationale for the physique digital camera being turned off can be “part of our investigation.”

“We don’t know what the circumstances were that preceded the shooting. There is an expectation [officers] activate the body camera.”

Investigators had not but interviewed the officer who shot Lynch, he stated.

“I do not have the answers the community is looking for,” the police chief conceded. “I’m not able to stand in front of my community and answer the hard questions.”

Police have arrested three males in reference to the capturing: Ahmon Adams, 22, Nyquez Baker, 18, and Devon Dorsey Jr, 20.

The press convention ended with a protester chanting “No justice, no peace!” The particular person could possibly be heard calling Lynch’s dying “a murder.”

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