Richmond police respond to three separate shootings in less than 12 hours

In less than 12 hours, three people were shot in the city of Richmond and in two of those cases, that gunfire ended a person’s life.
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 7:01 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 19, 2023 at 10:23 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) -In less than 12 hours, three people were shot in the city of Richmond, and in two of those cases, that gunfire ended a person’s life.

Now, as the police investigation unfolds, the community is calling for intervention.

Charles Willis with United Communities Against Crime says he does not believe the incidents are related, but he says it is a reminder if you see something, say something.

It all started Monday, Sept. 18, around 8 p.m. near Whitcomb Court, off Carmine Street. A man was shot and taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Then, a few hours later and just a few minutes down the road in Richmond’s East End, a man was shot and killed off Mechanicsville Turnpike just before one in the morning.

Around 5 a.m., a man was found dead with a gunshot wound in a home off of Overlook Street, up the street from Richmond Public Schools’ Oak Grove Bellemeade Elementary School.

“None of the families were financially prepared for this,” Willis said. “We have to get rid of the crime and know one of the strongest ways to get rid of the crime is teaching folks how to how to identify when there’s a need for violence prevention.”

Willis says he has been in contact with the victims’ families, who are all different ages. He says he does not believe any of the shootings are related now, as it is an unfortunate coincidence. That’s why he says neighbors need to take action now.

“Just because you put stop the violence on a flyer and say you have an event, don’t mean that folks got to stop the violence,” Willis said.

He wants conflict resolution seminars to teach people what to do in these situations, as he says it is up to the community to fix what is happening. He also calls for “behavior monitors,” who he says would be in Richmond schools, sporting events and neighborhoods.

“When the public safety, when the police department goes home, and they’re resting because they are human folks, they have to rest. Then, violence is still going on in our communities. So, it’s the mediators that live in a community that have to take action and take charge,” Willis said.

Willis says he also brought this idea to the Richmond School Board and city leaders.

He says the people who are mediators would wear a shirt or something to signal their role, and they would be people who would be able to intervene, but also another set of eyes to follow if ‘you see something, say something.’

“The violence that you have seen in the last 24 hours was already being played. It was already there. That’s why we are constantly trying to teach folks to prepare for war in a time of peace,” Willis said.

This all unfolds just a day before Richmond Police Chief Rick Edwards will give the community a crime update on Wednesday, Sept. 20, at 11 a.m., where he will provide updates from Operation Safe Summer.

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