The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Shooting suspect in custody after hours-long lockdown
UPDATE: (2:40 a.m.) The suspect is now in custody, according to a release from Natatia Bledsoe of the Fredericksburg Police Department. Displaced residents should be able to return to their homes shortly. More information to follow.
Original posts below:
UPDATE: (12:41 .m.) From Fredericksburg Police Department:
The lockdown at the Commons Apartment complex continues as the shooter remains inside his apartment.
Members of the Crisis Negotiation Team are involved in ongoing communication with the suspect.
The victim, a 52-year-old man who resides at the Commons, was shot more than once but is expected to survive.
Police are working to evacuate the residents from the apartments immediately surrounding the unit occupied by the gunman. The evacuated residents are temporarily sheltering in the training room of Police Headquarters, which is located next to the apartment complex. Residents of the Commons are reminded to stay indoors until the situation is resolved or until they are contacted by police or apartment management and told to evacuate.
By Keith Epps and Lindley Estes, The Free Lance-Star
City police spokeswoman Natatia Bledsoe said the shooter was barricaded in an apartment at the Commons at Cowan Boulevard next to the police station with what police believe are multiple weapons.
Reports from the scene indicated that shots were exchanged with police after the initial victim had been taken to the hospital, Bledsoe said.
A portion of Cowan Boulevard is blocked off and no one is being allowed in or out of the apartment complex as police try to persuade the man to give himself up. His name has not been released, though police know who he is.
Bledsoe said the incident began about 8:40 p.m. when police got a call that someone had been shot. Rescue workers found the victim outside the apartment with what were believed to be non life-threatening injuries and rushed him to Mary Washington Hospital.
The city’s Special Entry and Crisis Negotiating teams are part of the heavy police presence on the scene. State police and the Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office are also assisting city police in trying to resolve the situation peacefully.
Bledsoe said she did not yet have details regarding what started the initial altercation or who lives in the apartment where the shooting occurred.
“This is still an active and very dangerous situation,” Bledsoe said.
Residents of the apartments were being told to stay inside under lock and key. The police department, next door to the complex, was being offered as shelter to those displaced by the standoff. About midnight, officers were starting to evacuate apartment units close to where the suspect was, Bledsoe said.
Heavily armed officers from several agencies were involved and negotiators were on the scene, as well.
Rescue and fire units were also standing by the complex, which is located across the street from the back of Mary Washington Hospital.
The apartments where the barricade is taking place are located in the same complex where a city policeman was shot to death in 2008.
Fredericksburg police officer Todd Bahr was shot to death June 6, 2008, when he responded to a domestic assault call at an apartment unit.
He was shot in the head and his assailant was shot several times by other officers before turning the gun on himself.