Richmond teen charged after 'very concerning' video; police chief calls behavior 'shocking and disturbing'

social media mental health
Posted at 4:22 PM, Jun 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-10 10:25:44-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- A 17-year-old boy is facing a number of charges in relation to a disturbing video circulating on social media involving assaults and robberies last month.

The teen was charged with two counts of robbery, two counts of abduction, two counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and four counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, officials with Richmond Police said Friday.

The arrest came after "disturbing video was circulated on social media showing juvenile males threatening other young males with a firearm and emotionally assaulting them, " police said.

“The behavior seen was deeply shocking and disturbing,” Rick Edwards, Richmond's interim police chief, said. “I thank First Precinct detectives and the SVIU team for quickly identifying and charging this suspect. While that is important, providing support is also critical. When we first viewed the video we promised to offer resources and assistance to the young men and their families – and we have offered support throughout this process.”

FULL INTERVIEW: Richmond's Interim Police Chief Rick Edwards on ‘cruel’ video, violence in the city

FULL INTERVIEW: Richmond Interim Police Chief Rick Edwards on ‘cruel’ video, violence in the city

Edwards, who addressed the video during a community event on May 25, said the video involved robbery as well as acts of extreme humiliation.

"This is obviously very concerning,” Edwards said. “When I look at that video, I feel very terrible for those young men. It was just very cruel what was done to them."

The investigation into the incident is ongoing, officials said.

Anyone with information is asked to call First Precinct Detective T. Wilson at 804-646-0672 or 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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