‘It has to change:’ Mother of 18-year-old shot and killed by troopers asking for footage to be released

Mother of 18-year-old shot and killed by troopers asking for footage to be released

GOOCHLAND, Va. (WWBT) - The family of Xzavier Hill, the 18-year-old teen shot and killed by police on I-64 on Jan. 9, says they are pleading for justice, asking that Virginia State Police release footage from the shooting.

“My son is not a thug, he is not a criminal, this has to stop,” said LaToya Benton, Hill’s mother. “Xzavier was my only child. I am begging ya’ll, please, I want justice for my son--I want it for my son.”

Benton says their family is from Norfolk and Hill was an integral part of the cleaning business they own. Benton says after high school, Hill moved to Charlottesville to work on a contract for the family business. He was driving back to Charlottesville on the morning of the shooting.

VSP says a trooper was near the 177 mile marker in Henrico County when they registered a 2003 Mercedes Benz driving 98 mph in a 65-mph zone. After the trooper turned on his lights and sirens, police said Hill sped away going at least 120 mph.

Police say Hill reached the 172 mile marker and attempted to make a U-turn in the westbound lanes. Instead, the vehicle ran off of the interstate and became stuck in the embankment. Police say two troopers approached the scene and told the driver to exit the vehicle and show his hands. A press release states Hill showed a firearm and was shot.

“We want the tape released, I want ya’ll to see what I saw. We want it released you guys, my sister saw it, my husband saw it, his uncle saw it, we want you to see what I saw,” said Benton. “I’m not wrong, I am not wrong, I known I am not wrong, I know what I saw--they killed my son. He said ‘okay’ what more could he say. I want the tape released.”

She says the police footage of the shooting tells a different story.

“No,” Benton said when asked if she saw a firearm in Xzavier’s hand. “Xzavier is left handed okay--he is reaching out of the car--he got shot with his left hand--he is reaching out of the car with his left hand he turns his body around. Let’s go back, when Xzavier first goes into the embankment he says ‘okay my door is open’ in the video. He’s left handed, he can’t shoot with his right arm.”

Benton says her son was a life guard, and without him, she would not have a business. She says Hill was also an athlete and attempting to start his life after graduating from North Stafford High School in 2020.

“It has to change--I want [the officers] fired, I want them charged. That’s justice for me, but that not even justice because I still can’t see my son. At the end of the day there is no justice, because they still can’t bring my son back. Something has to be done, us moms are tired.”

Benton’s family says they plan to hire a civil rights attorney.

“Please, ask Virginia State Police to release the tape,” she said.

In accordance with state police policy, the two troopers involved in the incident have been placed on administrative leave during the investigation. Virginia State Police’s Richmond office is investigating the shooting. Once Virginia State Police completes its investigation, the findings will be turned over to the commonwealth’s attorney for final review and adjudication.

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