Police, neighbors describe moments before and after officers shoot man with gun on Richmond porch

Posted at 6:03 PM, Mar 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-08 14:56:54-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Moments of chaos erupted in the Fulton Hill neighborhood Sunday night as police rushed to a home where two officers had just shot a man — but then, witnesses said, a quietness settled in on Garber Street.

Richmond Police said around 10:45 p.m., a man pointed a weapon at two officers, who were responding to the 1200 block of Garber Street after someone reported the man was on their porch with the loaded weapon.

Those officers fired on the man after commands to drop the weapon were not followed, Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith said at a press conference Monday morning.

“We heard multiple shots fired,” said one neighbor near the scene, who asked to not be identified. “About 20 - 30 cops came off Williamsburg Road.”

“One gunshot followed by a very rapid succession of gunshots,” Tracy Foard, who lives next door to where the shooting happened, said. “It was a solemn scene out here,” she said about the moments after the initial response.

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Tracy Foard

Foard, who is the president of the Greater Fulton Neighborhood Association, said she was sitting on her own front porch just moments before the 9-1-1 call was placed to the police.

“I was just out here and assured myself that everything was quiet on the street last night,” she said while sitting on her porch Monday. “To know that within minutes of that happening, somebody was up on a porch brandishing a weapon that ended up in a gunfight on the street.”

Chief Smith said Monday both officers fired their weapons and would remain on administrative leave for at least 48 hours.

"Our prayers are with the suspect's family at this time, as well as with the officers who are going through this dramatic and traumatic incident in their careers," said Smith.

Smith identified the officers involved Monday as Officer Richard Redford and Officer Shannon McGarva.

The man, who police said had no connection to the home where this happened, pointed a loaded gun at the officers less than a minute from when they arrived at the house.

“He pointed a gun at the officers. The officers gave repeated commands to him to drop the weapon. He did not. That’s when the officers fired their firearms,” Smith said. “We are reviewing the body-worn cameras of the officers as well as the security cam footage at the home.”

Smith said investigators are examining whether the man tried to fire the weapon too.

“It could be described that way, but until it goes to our crime lab and that is examined, we’re going to hold off and say whether it was a misfire or not,” Smith said.

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“I heard one of the police officers say the gun misfired, which was a good thing,” Foard said.

Foard said it was scary to think about how the situation played out, but her thoughts now turn to those directly touched by the shooting and her neighbor.

“People have eyes on the street here. People are very conscious of what’s going on in their neighborhood, and it’s just a fabulous place to live. I love the people,” Foard said.

The identity of the man killed by police has not been released to this point.

Anyone with information about this incident can call Major Crimes Detective M. Young (804) 646-3926 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

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