Petersburg Police investigate shooting near Walnut Hill Elementary School

School officials confirmed a shooting happened outside of the building.
Published: Aug. 24, 2023 at 4:31 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 24, 2023 at 11:12 PM EDT
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PETERSBURG, Va. (WWBT) -Petersburg police are investigating a shooting near Walnut Hill Elementary School.

On Thursday, Aug. 24, police say a shooting happened in the West South Boulevard and Wakefield area.

School officials confirmed a shooting happened outside of the school building.

Petersburg County Public Schools tweeted that Walnut Hill Elementary went under “controlled movement” for about 30 minutes.

All students and staff were safe.

“I mean, it definitely was not good, and we could tell something was going on,” Chase Dunn, who works across from the elementary school, said.

He says before the large police presence showed up, he looked over and saw a white car stopped as a police car passed by.

“I guess the gentleman jumped out of the car and waived the cop car down and the cop car flipped around, quick u-turn, and then flipped his lights on real quick,” Dunn said. “The gentleman, I guess, explained to the cop what happened, and then a bunch of other cops came.”

Police closed off South Blvd. and Wakefield Ave. for a short period.

Police have yet to say if anyone was injured, but the white car was towed away.

“It’s definitely scary, but it’s been going on for a while though, it’s just scary that it’s getting real close,” Dunn said.

Neighbors coming home Thursday afternoon shared the same choice of words.

“It’s crazy cause usually everything happens on that side of Crater Rd,” Melissa Carter, who lives nearby, said. “Stuff doesn’t usually happen right here.”

Schools in Petersburg do not start until after Labor Day, but Carter said things could have been worse if school was back.

“Definitely. I mean, the kids that live over there, they walk all the time. I see them going through the yard, kids everywhere,” Carter said.

Neighbors are telling the community that the gun violence needs to end.

“I mean, it doesn’t matter who you are, what you are, it just needs to stop,” Carter said.