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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — On Monday, Virginia Beach police shared bodycam footage of last Thursday’s fatal shooting at a shopping center on Newtown Road. It shows one of the suspects repeatedly reach for a concealed gun before a VBPD officer fatally shoots the other suspect, who police say pointed a gun at the officer.
The suspect killed, 28-year-old Deshawn Whitaker, was shot at least once in the upper torso and later died at the hospital, police say. He had initially fled the scene, but returned and grabbed a gun from a red satchel that was at the scene, police said. Footage from two different angles appears to show Whitaker with a gun pointed at the officer.
The other suspect, 20-year-old Jacqueline Ortiz-Whitaker, was taken into custody and faces multiple charges, including possession of firearm after a domestic violence conviction and brandishing a firearm. She was married to Whitaker and is currently being held at the Virginia Beach Correctional Center.
She spoke to WAVY from behind bars over the weekend. Click here to watch that interview.
The officer, a 14-year law enforcement veteran (7 years with Virginia Beach) who returned to VBPD in 2021, received minor injuries and was released at the scene.
“We almost had an officer killed … executed doing his job, protecting the city of Virginia Beach,” said Virginia Beach Police Chief Paul Neudigate said Monday. “I’m angry. I’m saddened …”
“So I think what we witnessed is a testament to [the officer’s] training, his skill and his will to survive. We all owe him a debt of gratitude,” Neudigate said.
The case is being reviewed by the Virginia Beach Commonwealth’s Attorneys Office and authorities are requesting and analyzing additional video sources and witnesses.
Neudigate said he also met with Whitaker’s family and said “any loss of life is a tragedy … no officer wants to take a life.”
Virginia Beach police say the shooting happened during a traffic stop for a stolen vehicle. The vehicle was reported stolen in Norfolk on November 20 and was involved in a police pursuit the following day in Newport News.
A second passenger who was in the vehicle at the time of the traffic stop and left before the officer could approach the car, has been identified and questioned. That person, police say, is not facing charges.