Latest murder has Northside neighborhood growing numb

Posted at 11:29 PM, Jun 04, 2012
and last updated 2012-06-04 23:29:12-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--People living in a Northside neighborhood were saying “here we go again,” as a man was shot to death at close range.  

Richmond Police as of late Monday night were still piecing details together.  It’s a murder that unfolded in broad daylight, possibly in front of some very young eyes.

Initial calls came in about an argument—around 5 p.m. -- then just two minutes later the call came in about a shooting.

You might say the image of an officer standing watch over a little girl is community policing with compassion, an effort to shield innocence from the violence evident on the other side of a row of bushes. 

“One after another it seems like," said Joey Dowdy, who lives nearby.

Over the past three months, three murders and several shootings have erupted near the same area of Chamberlayne Avenue. 

The shooting occurred a block away from the double-shooting on April 16, 2012. The incident is close to the Newman Village Apartments, where 17-year-old Keona Johnson was fatally shot in April in a drive-by shooting.

So much violence that Dowdy says it’s all becoming a blur.  “Hitting close to home man,” said Dowdy.  “This is someone we consider family.  It's a tragedy."

One man on the scene shouted out that he had been standing next to the victim right before he was shot.   Sources told CBS 6 reporter Jon Burkett that an argument between two men over a girl that triggered the killing and that the suspect was quickly taken into custody.  

Police said that two blocks of Chamberlayne Avenue, north of Laburnum Avenue, were closed for just under three hours to accommodate the investigation.

"I've never seen so many police cars,” said Harry Clements, coming home from work. 

Fern Tree Apartments residents had been told to stay away from their homes until police could process the scene.  Clements, who works at Downtown Desserts, says scenes like Monday’s leave a bad taste.  "After a hard day's work,” he said.  “I just want to come home and relax, not to a bunch of confusion like you see here now."

Detectives, K-9 officers, their four-legged partners sniffing for evidence and forensics officers documenting a daytime killing all part of the Richmond Police Department’s effort to solve the city’s latest murder.

 "We bring out our resources, K-9's , detectives, forensics, quite frankly, to leave no stone unturned," said James R. Mercante, a public information officer for Richmond Police. 

The victim’s stepsister identified her half-brother, but so far we cannot release his name until police confirm that his family has been notified.

Homicide investigation on Chamberlayne