Why Richmond Police called off a press conference answering questions about the Graduation Day shooting

Why Richmond Police called off a press conference answering questions about the Graduation Day shooting

RICHMOND, Va. — Hours after Richmond Police canceled an announced press conference to provide the public an update on and to answer outstanding questions about the Graduation Day shooting outside the Altria Theater, Interim Police Chief Rick Edwards .

“After careful review of the evidence at this time and in consultation with the Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, unfortunately, I’m not going to be able to provide the types of details that many in the community and the media are asking for,” Edwards said. “We have to balance the public’s right to know about this very important case with the eventual court case that is coming. And it’s a delicate balance that we have to find that happy medium. It’s my goal to not do anything that could jeopardize the eventual criminal case.”

Some questions CBS 6 reporters have been asking in the days since the shooting include:

  • between the murder suspect Amari Pollard and slain Huguenot High School graduate
  • To whom did the four guns found at the shooting scene belong?
  • How did those guns appear outside the graduation ceremony so quickly?
  • How many of the deaths and injuries were tied to bullets allegedly fired from Pollard’s gun?
  • Edwards did provide some answers to questions he said the police department has continued to field since the June 6 mass shooting.


    “We can confirm through our investigation that we don’t believe that any guns were brought inside the Altria theater during the course of the graduation,” he said.

    Jackson and his stepfather Renzo Smith were fatally shot outside the theater after the June 6 graduation ceremony concluded and graduates and their families were meeting in and around Monroe Park.

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    “We’re also continuing to get questions about this case being involved in gang activity. At this point, the Richmond Police Department does not believe that there’s any gang involvement in this case,” Edwards also said. “Investigators are continuing to work diligently with our federal and state partners on this case. Every day we’re learning more information. This is an incredibly complex case, with hundreds of people, hundreds of witnesses, and many videos that we’re still evaluating on a daily basis.”

    In total, the information Edwards shared was:

  • Information about the guns found at the scene will come out during the court case
  • The suspect and slain student knew each other and the shooting does not appear to be gang related
  • One person still hospitalized following the shooting is scheduled to be released this week
  • A man taken into custody and released the day of the shooting was NOT involved in the incident
  • Edwards asked anyone with information about the shootings to call Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000. Anyone who was injured in the shooting was asked to call the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney Victim/Witness Services at 804-646-7665.

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