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Reverend devastated by Charles City murder: ‘We’re very concerned’

Posted at 7:48 PM, Nov 10, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-11 09:16:06-05

CHARLES CITY COUNTY, Va. -- The reverend at a Charles City County church is devastated by a fatal shooting Saturday morning not far from the house of worship.

Little Elam Baptist Church is about a mile away from where deputies with the Charles City County Sheriff's Department received a report of multiple shots fired at 2:35 a.m.

Little Elam Baptist Church

Little Elam Baptist Church

Rev. Danny Patterson said the crime happening so close to the church is pretty devastating."

When deputies arrived to the 8400 block of Little Elam Road, they found 38-year-old James Sheldon unresponsive and suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

When EMS  crews arrived two minutes later, Sheldon was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.

Rev. Danny Patterson

Rev. Danny Patterson

Patterson said he is trying to protect the county’s youth from with youth gatherings and events.

"It alarms me quite a bit," Patterson said. "Although I'm retired law enforcement, I understand and I know that things like this happen and we're very concerned."

As a result, Patterson said the church hosts gatherings and events aimed at the county’s youth in an effort to protect them from violence.

Deputies worked with Virginia State Police, the US Marshals Service and Richmond Police to identify a suspect, 37-year-old Antiwan Jackson.

Official said Jackson was taken into custody Saturday evening.

Jackson was charged with possession of a firearm by convicted violent felon, firearm used in commission of felony 2nd offense, and 2nd degree murder, according to investigators.

Little Elam Road

Little Elam Road

"I know there are people out there afraid and it's understandable that they’re afraid to speak out," Patterson noted. "But we want to the community to realize, if you know something, you need to speak up, so that they can solve this case."

Anyone with information about the crime is urged to call the Charles City County Sheriff’s Department at 804-829-9265.