Girl, 11, tells Henrico police Dad shot Mom

By Andy Jenks - bio | email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) – A Henrico Mom is shot, Dad is in jail, and their small children in a state of shock.

Damond J. Austin, 32, is accused of shooting his wife in the head just steps away from their three young kids.

Tuesday night, police got a call for a loud fight inside a townhome at the Old Bridge apartments in Lakeside. Police say when they got to the door, an 11-year-old girl indicated that Daddy shot Mommy.

Just a shred of police tape marks the scene of the crime; the place where police say Damond Austin shot his wife, the mother of their three kids. It was 9:45 Tuesday night. A 911 caller said it sounded like a fight on the second floor...and then, a single gunshot.

Neighbor Irwin Edwards called it "crazy".

"This is, like, a different type of neighborhood. This is the West End," Edwards said.

After the shooting, police say Austin left the house; the wounded mother and three kids now home alone. But, later, they say he came back and led police to a semi-automatic weapon.

"Everybody over here look happy. I've never seen anybody be upset at each other or nothing," Edwards said.

Police say Mom was hit in the head with a .40 caliber bullet, but survived, and now is listed in stable  condition.

Rick Parker lives across the street from the shooting scene.

"Am I surprised? Not so much. I think it happens from time to time," Parker said.

Austin was arrested and charged with aggravated malicious wounding, and use of a firearm in a felony. The kids were not least not physically.

"We have at least four victims. The mother and the three children," said Henrico Police Lt. Eric Owens.

At ages 11, 6, and 1...the emotional toll is now only beginning to settle in.

"Well, those kids are gonna need some help, some psychiatric counseling I would think," Parker said.

The kids are living with other family members for now. Mom continues to recover, in serious but stable condition at VCU Medical Center.

Austin remains in the Henrico County Jail. He'll make a court appearance in early April.

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