Gus Deeds pictured cheering on his father years ago.
BATH, VA (WWBT) -
Gus Deeds reportedly underwent a mental health evaluation the day before he was found dead of a gunshot wound and his father, Senator Creigh Deeds, was stabbed.
Senator Deeds is now in fair condition after he was stabbed multiple times to his head and chest at his Bath County home, according to State Police.
Few politicians in Virginia are known as well as Sen. Creigh Deeds and everyone is trying to figure out what could have led to a fight in his own home.
Deeds is known as a folksy, plain-spoken public servant, with a kind smile and relentless work ethic.
Sen. Deeds is well liked by both parties and always put his family first. Perhaps that is why it is so shocking that his 24-year-old son, Gus, who was often by his side on the statewide campaign trail in 2009, is the one at the center of this tragedy.
State Police say Deeds and his son got into a fight Tuesday around 7 a.m. The fight led to the Senator being stabbed multiple times on his head and torso. He managed to walk out of his house for help.
"As he was coming down the hill of his residence toward Route 42, he encountered a cousin who lives nearby," said Virginia State Police Spokesperson Corrine Geller.
That cousin called 911 and officials quickly knew Deeds needed help.
Senator Deeds' injuries were serious enough that he was flown by helicopter more than 90 miles from Bath County to UVA Medical Center in Charlottesville. Meanwhile, his son was suffering from a serious gunshot wound, a wound that authorities believe was self inflicted. By the time they got there to help, he could not be saved.
"And despite the troopers and the first responders efforts," said Geller, "He did die at the scene."
Now, the investigation begins in earnest, as a family and an entire commonwealth search for answers.
Among the questions is a report from the Times-Dispatch that Gus Deeds underwent a psychiatric evaluation on Monday and was recommended for emergency custody, an order that could've forced the young man to be held from 4 to 72 hours; however, there was nowhere to place him. He was eventually released.
State Police refused to comment on the report and officials Rockbridge Area Community Services, which was the source of the Times-Dispatch story, said they could not confirm the information in the paper's story.
"While we understand the nature of the questions, we also respect the family's privacy. First of all, we want to express our sadness and deepest sympathy for the Deeds family," said the agency in a prepared statement.
The U.Va. University Democrats and College Republicans announced they will hold a joint vigil for Deeds at 7 p.m. Thursday at the U.Va. Amphitheater.
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