Henrico’s top prosecutor awaits report on shooting by officer

Posted at 10:56 PM, Apr 27, 2012
and last updated 2012-04-27 23:28:42-04

HENRICO COUNTY, Va (WTVR)- Will there be charges in Thursday’s police-involved shooting?  It may be months before we find out.

Henrico’s top prosecutor Shannon Taylor says she’s giving police time to put a report together so she can review it methodically.

Police were called to a West End apartment complex off Three Chopt Road Thursday afternoon for a disorderly person.  When they arrived they saw 20-year-old Allen Skeen smashing an amplifier into the windshield of his aunt’s car.

“He’s got mental issues that are documented with Henrico mental health,” said Gary Crawford, a family friend.

According to witnesses, Skeens then turned toward police, who had their weapons drawn at that point.   “They told him to put his hands out,” said next-door neighbor Robert Brooks.  “He said ‘go ahead and shoot me.’”

Those words, which some would say constitute a plea for “suicide by cop,” will be included in a report that will cross Commonwealth’s Attorney Shannon Taylor’s desk in the near future.

“We allow the Henrico Police Department time to put together a report,” said Taylor.  “With all the evidence and witness accounts.  Then they will present it to me.”

Sources tell me the officer who pulled the trigger, critically wounding Skeens, has been patrolling for only about a year, and is now on administrative duty.

Retired police captain Steve Neal says witness accounts and evidence including photos from the scene, snapped by a bystander, will play a role in the police investigation.

“The fact of when that picture was shot is important,” said Neal.  “Because it sheds light on what the circumstances are when the trigger is pulled.”

A source tells me Skeens is recovering at VCU Medical Center.  He’s in stable condition and was scheduled to have another surgery Friday night.  His family says they are focused on Skeens getting better and not on the police investigation.