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At least 100 shell casings found outside Virginia Waffle House

Neighbor: 'They were ripping the bullets off. I’m surprised more damage wasn’t done...'
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Posted at 5:31 PM, Feb 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-07 17:32:18-05

COLONIAL HEIGHTS, Va. -- Witnesses and police are calling it a miracle that nobody was killed after officers believe multiple shooters fired off scores of shots outside the Waffle House in Colonial Heights early Saturday morning.

Police found at least 100 spent shell casings littering the parking lot of the Waffle House at 2002 Boulevard. That is where police were called at 2:30 a.m. for reports of shots fired.

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Shooting outside Colonial Heights Waffle House early Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021.

“I was sleeping, and I heard, ‘Boom, boom.’ Two shots,” Dean Hines recalled. “Whenever I got up, I heard probably 20 more shots.”

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Shooting outside Colonial Heights Waffle House early Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021.

The barrage of gunfire exchanged followed what police said was a late night argument between two groups.

“They started shooting at the Waffle House and ended up at my house shooting a hole in my tailgate,” said Mike Johnston, who lives near the restaurant.

Johnston woke to bullet holes and casings on his property.

“Sounded like an AK-47 was in the parking lot of the Waffle House and a pistol over here shooting,” Johnston said. “They were ripping the bullets off. I’m surprised more damage wasn’t done around here.”

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Shooting outside Colonial Heights Waffle House early Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021.

Two victims, a 19-year-old man from Alexandria and a 25-year-old man from Richmond, drove themselves to area hospitals, police said.

Neither injury was life-threatening, according to officers.

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Shooting outside Colonial Heights Waffle House early Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021.

“Prior to the initial shooting, several individuals were inside the Waffle House,” Major William H. Anspach with Colonial Heights Police said. “An argument between the individuals broke out that spilled out into the parking lot, where what resulted was several individuals firing weapons at each other.”

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While investigators search for multiple shooters in the crowd that scattered afterward, they are asking for the public’s help identifying a person of interest, a man wearing a Chicago Bulls jersey who was inside the Waffle House before the chaos.

“Couple of people have an argument, and instead of agreeing to disagree and walking away, they decide to go outside and turn it into gunfire that could have killed anybody,” Anspach said.

Anyone with information about the shooting is urged to call Detective Sergeant A.C. Brandeberry at 804-520-9300 option #7, or by email at brandeberrya@colonialheightsva.gov.

"If you have information, but would like to remain anonymous, please contact the Chesterfield County/Colonial Heights Crime Solvers at 804-748-0660, or you can submit a tip using the mobile app," police said.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.