Saturday, April 27, 2013

VA - Murdered man Hopewell’s first homicide of the year

Original Article


By Greg McQuade

HOPEWELL (WTVR) - Hopewell Police are investigating the first homicide of 2013 inside a home on Buren Street.

A man confronted an intruder and shots are fired, but police don’t think this is a random crime.

Buren Street in Hopewell. A place with tidy homes flying American flags and where neighbors watch out for each other.

But the quiet calm was shattered early Friday morning. An armed intruder breaks into 915 Buren just before 6 in the morning.

[name withheld], who lives in the home, confronts the person. Moments later gunshots ring out. The 41-year-old dies inside with his mother just feet away.

Neighbor Justin Parke says he heard gunfire just a few houses away.

When I heard it I was right there in my living room watching television. It was like boom…boom…boom,” says Parke.

There is a probability here that the victim was not the intended target,” says Hopewell Police Chief, John Keohane. “Right now for the residents it does not appear to be a random act of violence in their neighborhood.”

One neighbor who didn’t want to be identified says she is leaving when her lease is up in June.

It’s too close for comfort. It’s scary. Really scary. My heart goes out to the parents or whoever has been suffering but it is heartbreaking.”

Long time neighbors like Isabel Vartanian are worried about a killer on the loose.

We need Hopewell to be like when I was growing up. Scares me to death. Definitely,” says Vartanian . “It breaks my heart to see that somebody was murdered right here.

[name withheld] was a registered sex offender with the Virginia State Police since 1995, but Hopewell’s police chief emphasizes the shooting was not related.
- And how does he know that when the case is not over yet?

At this point there is nothing to believe that him being on a sex offender registry has anything to do with this homicide,” says Chief Keohane.

For Vartanian, she just wants the person who pulled the trigger caught soon so she can rest easier.

We never had any crime growing up. We were safe and did not have hate.”

Late Friday afternoon Hopewell police were still processing the crime scene and investigators were interviewing persons of interest.

The Chief of Police says detectives are following strong leads in the case. If you know anything about [name withheld]'s death you’re asked to call Hopewell Police at 804-541-2222.


Eric Knight said...

WHY does the chief IMMEDIATELY say that the registrant's status was not the motive for the crime? In fact, the very sequence of events reported indicate that this was a PERSONAL crime, and in fact that the murdered victim WAS the INTENDED victim. The very fact the chief would even MENTION this is because he KNOWS there would be an immediate, and justified, look into the danger of the sex offender registry as a whole...something the chief would NOT want to be known for in his legacy.

SOIssues said...

That was our point. I think they are doing that to make it look like the registry is not an online hit-list, so they can continue to have their draconian hit-list and laws. If it comes out that people are dying due to the online registry, then it may be shut down, and they cannot have that.

Mark said...

"[name withheld] was a registered sex offender with the Virginia State Police since 1995, but Hopewell’s police chief emphasizes the shooting was not related." The police chief is related to Uri Geller.