In a long article, the RTD is reporting that the RPD has concluded that East End robbery suspect Curtis Blount, fatally shot Sept. 20 after being cornered in an alley by police, killed himself with his own gun, according to a nearly completed police internal affairs investigation.
The article is based on an official memorandum summarizing the Richmond Police Department’s internal affairs probe of the incident. The memorandum reaffirms the most critical information offered by law enforcement sources in the days after the shooting — that police apparently did not shoot Blount, a 19-year-old who was being sought that day along with a cousin on suspicion of robbing a woman six blocks away.
Some of the other details include:
- A Virginia Commonwealth University police officer who responded to the scene told investigators she saw Blount put the gun to his head and shoot himself.
- Four Richmond police officers and a second VCU officer fired their weapons during the incident.
- According to Blount’s cousin, police and other witnesses, Blount reached into his waistband for his handgun and started shooting first.
- Police fired 10 rounds and hit nobody.
- Blount is believed to have fired one to five rounds from his handgun, but only one shell casing was recovered from Blount’s weapon at the scene. The bullet removed from his head was determined to have been fired by the weapon recovered at the scene.
The article also mentions the concerns “among citizen advocates, elected officials and others in local law enforcement”, and says that Commonwealth’s Attorney David M. Hicks has not received an official report from the police department.
The narrative provided is this:
It began at 1 PM on September 20, 2004, with the call of an armed robbery of a woman at Fairmount Avenue and North 24th Street. As Officer Ford began interviewing the woman, Officer Hernandez patrolled the area in search of suspects matching the woman’s description.
Hernandez spotted Blount and his cousins Deandre and Lonell Blount in the parking lot. Curtis Blount opened fire on Hernandez after the detective got out of his car, drew his weapon and told the men to show their hands and lie on the ground.
Hernandez hit the ground, then got up and fired back at Curtis Blount, who took off. Deandre and Lonell Blount ran in another direction, and Marland, who had arrived moments earlier to back up Hernandez, radioed in for assistance.
Curtis Blount was eventually surrounded at 1817 Fairmount Ave. Ford arrived and took cover behind a tree. VCU Officers Pelosky and Carla Middleton, along with Richmond Officer Crystal Winston, approached from another direction. Goodall, Marland, Richmond police Capt. Norris Evans and Sheriff’s Deputy Horace Evans approached from the front of 1817 Fairmount.
Blount waved his gun around several times, alternately putting it to his head and then pulling it away. Then, Middleton told internal-affairs investigators, she saw Blount put the gun to his head and shoot.
Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Traci Miller said the victim, who has a history of drug use and prostitution arrests, has disappeared.