‘Everybody is shocked’: Richmond police identify mom and son killed in murder-suicide

Dog also shot in the incident miraculously survived
A gruesome shooting in Richmond -- now being ruled a murder-suicide.
Published: Jan. 14, 2023 at 7:42 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 16, 2023 at 7:29 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Two people were found dead at a home on Richdale Road in South Richmond on Saturday afternoon in what police say was a murder-suicide.

Officers were called just before 4 p.m. for a report of a person down in the 2400 block of Richdale Road. On Monday, police said that Lee Blair, 49, shot and killed his mother, Kathy Brashier, 68.

Police say that Blair died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

“I can’t believe it even happened, everybody is shocked. They can’t believe it,” Brashier’s next-door neighbor Jimmy Crigger said. “It’s mind-blowing.”

Brashier was described as the kind woman next-door. Neighbors describe her son as quiet and subdued.

“He and his mom would get to arguing so bad sometimes that she would leave,” Crigger said. “It would scare her...he would flip out on her and everything.”

Now balloons and flowers adorn the house’s front stoop where the tragedy transpired.

Crigger says Kathy was friendly to all in their quiet neighborhood.

“I would see her outside every day in the yard. She would come out there and talk to everybody,” her neighbor said.

Other neighbors told NBC12 off-camera that they heard gunshots on Friday.

The bodies were not discovered until Saturday afternoon around 3:30 p.m. The only survivor was the dog, which had also been shot.

“Also found in the home was a dog who was wounded by an apparent gunshot wound,” police said in a news release on Monday. “Richmond Animal Care & Control was called and transported the dog for treatment.”

In a social media post, RACC says it’s a “miracle” the dog survived after bullet fragments were found in his head and neck.

“Their homicide detectives were messaging us and were like, ‘oh my gosh, it was really sad and gruesome, and their hope upon hope is that this dog can live’ and that they were so surprised to find him still alive,” RACC Director Christie Chipps-Peters said.

According to RACC, Luca was left in the house, unable to move for up to 20 hours until officers found him.

“The time that had lapsed, he lost a lot of blood, and we’re just so grateful that it hit right where it hit and that he was able to survive that long until he was found,” Chipps-Peters said.

RACC says Luca is still in recovery as doctors assess his injuries.

The shelter later Monday evening posted a video on Facebook of Luca walking using all four legs, saying he’s now “much brighter and is wagging his tail when anyone approaches his kennel.”

At this time, the next of kin are unable to take him in. Once he heals, he will be put up for adoption.

“His prognosis is guarded at best, but we can’t give up until we’ve tried everything we can to help him,” RACC said.

Anyone with information about these shootings is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000.