Police: SWAT officer shoots Virginia man who brandished gun
FALLS CHURCH. Va. (AP) — A SWAT team officer shot and wounded a northern Virginia man who brandished an assault-style weapon at authorities who were serving a drug-related search warrant Tuesday night, police said.
A Fairfax County Police SWAT team dispatched to a townhouse in the Falls Church area around 10 p.m. was confronted by David Vo, 24, who was holding the weapon, according to a statement released by police.
At a news conference Wednesday, Fairfax County Police Chief Edwin Roessler said an officer shot Vo in the leg after Vo confronted the officer in the kitchen with an assault-style weapon pointed at police.
Vo was treated and released at a hospital and is being held at the county jail on multiple charges, Roessler said.
The department didn’t identify the officer involved, but said he is a 16-year veteran of the department and assigned to the Special Operations Division. The officer has been placed on administrative leave pending investigation.
A criminal investigation into the use of force is being conducted by the Major Crimes Bureau and the name of the officer will be released by Chief Roessler within 10 days, police said.
While the investigation is ongoing, Roseeler on Wednesday praised the officer and said he “heroically reverted to proportionate, legal and necessary levels of use of force” to subdue a legitimate threat. He noted that Vo’s two children, both under the age of 4, were in the home at the time and neither were harmed.
“It’s a split-second decision, and I support the pull of the trigger by my officer because ... if he probably hesitated, I’d be dealing with a funeral for one of my officers,” he said.
Roseelser said police decided to use a SWAT team to execute the search warrant because Vo had a prior record that included domestic assault and firing at a vehicle. He said police announced their presence as they entered the home.