A flurry of shootings Friday night in Virginia Beach, Va. have left at least two people dead and eight people injured.
“We have a very chaotic incident,” Virginia Beach Police Chief Paul Neudigate said during a press conference early Saturday morning. “We have a very chaotic night in the beach.”
Local NBC affiliate WAVY-TV reported that three separate shootings occurred in steady succession while officers were on or near the scene and in the process of investigating each prior incident.
Neudigate said the initial shooting was the most violent of them all.
Patrol officers responded to reports of nearby gunfire at around 11:20 p.m. EST, according to the department. Eight people were seriously wounded during the first incident.
“Some of these injuries range from serious to life-threatening,” police said in a press release. “One Virginia Beach Police Officer was transported to the hospital with minor injuries.”
Each of the eight victims were transported to local hospitals.
There is “no suspect information available at this time” about the initial shooting, police say. The case is being investigated by members of the VBPD’s Homicide Unit.
While officers were inspecting the original shooting scene, police claim to have heard additional gunshots roughly one block away. That second shooting led to “individual being confronted by a uniformed Virginia Beach police officer, resulting in a police intervention shooting,” according to Neudigate, who noted the person is now “deceased.”
The person killed by police was simply described as a “male suspect” who “succumbed to his wounds at the scene.”
The VBPD noted that in line with “standard procedure,” the officer who killed the male suspect is a five-year veteran of the department and is being “placed on administrative assignment pending the outcome of the investigation.”
An unidentified woman is also dead as a result of the violent night.
“We also have a second deceased individual that was not part of the police-intervention shooting,” Neudigate said during a press conference held near the first crime scene at around 2 a.m. EST.
“We don’t believe it was part of the original shooting behind us,” the police chief added, saying that preliminary indicators suggest it was “a separate shooting that [police] are still trying to piece together.”
That story may now be changing, however, as the VBPD’s official press release currently says that “[o]ne adult female victim succumbed to her injuries from a gunshot wound on the scene” — in an apparent reference to the original mass shooting incident.
“We’ll be doing our due diligence to find the people involved in this and hold them accountable,” Neudigate said while noting that an officer was later injured in yet another incident believed to be entirely separate from the prior multiple shootings. That officer was struck by a car and is currently being treated for minor injuries.
“This scene is still very active with several crime scene areas blocking roadways,” the VBPD said, stressing that residents should avoid the area as the investigation continues.
Police have yet to venture a possible motive for the attack.
[image via screengrab/WTKR-TV]
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