Two Norfolk police officers who shot and killed a drunk and armed man on Granby Street in February moments after the man fired his gun at two downtown apartments will not face any charges, the city’s chief prosecutor announced Tuesday.
Norfolk Commonwealth Attorney Ramin Fatehi made the announcement at a press conference conference in which he showed body camera footage recorded by officers during the February 12 shooting near the Irish pub and restaurant Grace O’Malley. Fatehi, who concluded that the officers’ use of lethal force was justified, said his decision was based on evidence gathered during an investigation by Virginia State Police.
The man who was shot, Barry D. Carrington Jr., was shot four times but survived, Fatehi said. He spent three days in hospital before being transferred to the city jail.
The officers who fired their weapons that night – Jacob Reeves and Gareth Coleman – were later placed on administrative duty. They will remain in that status until a departmental firearms review board determines whether they acted in accordance with departmental training and policies, a Norfolk police spokesperson said.
“We owe Officer Reeves and Coleman our thanks for making the heartbreaking, split-second decision to use force in the service of public safety,” Fatehi said. “We must remember that every time a police officer goes to work, they may have to make difficult, split-second, life-or-death decisions, often risking their own life to protect the lives of others. »
In August, Carrington pleaded guilty to shooting at an occupied building and was sentenced to six months in prison, according to online court records. The case was handled by a special prosecutor from Newport News.
Fatehi’s office released a 10-minute video on Tuesday that shows the shooting. It’s a compilation of police body camera footage, interior surveillance footage of Grace O’Malley, and cellphone video taken by a witness on the street.
On the evening of the incident, Reeves was off duty and working security at the main hotel around 10:15 p.m. he heard a night manager say that a man may have been brandishing a gun outside the hotel lobby, according to Fatehi. Reeves wore a body camera, turned it on, and told Carrington not to come back to the hotel, where he had been drinking earlier.
Carrington walked away and headed for Randolph Street, where he fired his gun 13 times, Fatehi said. The bullets hit the living room window of one apartment in the Law Building and the bedroom window of another.
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Reeves heard the shots, called for additional officers and ran down Granby and Plume streets, Fatehi said. Officer Marko Padilla and Coleman – who was on his fourth day as a police officer – joined Reeves in confronting Carrington near Grace O’Malley.
Carrington can be seen on body camera video holding a gun. He turned his back on the officers and loaded a magazine into the gun, Fatehi said. Investigators would later learn the magazine was empty, but officers had no way of knowing at the time, he said.
Officers can be heard in the footage repeatedly yelling at Carrington to drop the gun. At one point, Carrington tells the officers to “shoot me,” Fatehi said.
Officers shot him as he ran down Granby Street with the gun drawn, Fatehi said. Carrington was hit in the left arm, shoulder and right leg and can be seen dropping his gun as he falls. Reeves shot eight times and Coleman twice. Padilla did not fire his weapon.
Surveillance footage from inside Grace O’Malley released at Tuesday’s press conference shows staff moving customers from the front of the restaurant to the back shortly before officers fired their weapons. A woman walking her dog nearby was injured in the foot, possibly by a ricocheting bullet, Fatehi said. She was treated on the spot.
Blood drawn from Carrington at the hospital showed he had a blood alcohol level of 0.30, nearly four times the legal limit for driving, Fatehi said.
Jane Harper, [email protected]