SPOTSYLVANIA, Va. – A South Carolina man is in custody after shooting at Virginia State Police following a pursuit up Interstate 95 that ended in Spotsylvania County. Jerrell C. Richardson, 21, of Greenville, S.C., is being held without bond at Rappahannock Regional Jail in Stafford, Va. After consultation with the Spotsylvania County Commonwealth’s Attorney, Virginia State Police charged Richardson with on one felony count of eluding police, one felony count of assault on a police officer, possession of marijuana, driving without a valid operator’s license, reckless driving and operating a vehicle without headlights. Additional charges are pending.
The incident began at approximately 8:40 p.m., Dec. 25, when Virginia State Police received a Be On the Look Out (BOLO) bulletin from the Dinwiddie County, Va. Sheriff’s Office for a 2015 Ford Escape. At approximately 9:40 p.m., Henrico County Police and Virginia State Police troopers located the Ford Escape at a gas station at Chamberlayne Avenue and Route 1. When the Henrico officer and State trooper approached the Ford Escape, the suspect vehicle fled the parking lot. State Police initiated a pursuit of the suspect vehicle, which had been reported stolen at gunpoint at a gas station earlier Monday evening in Thomasville, N.C.
The pursuit continued north on Interstate 95 with the Ford Escape reaching speeds in excess of 120 mph. As the Ford Escape entered Spotsylvania County, it rammed a state trooper’s vehicle at least twice. At the 119 mile marker, the driver – Richardson – bailed from the Ford Escape as it was still moving and ran on foot towards the median. As the troopers pursued Richardson on foot, he shot at the troopers. One trooper returned fire, but Richardson continued into the wooded median.
Interstate 95 was consequently closed in both directions for the safety of all motorists and a perimeter established to contain Richardson within the median. State police K9 and tactical teams along Fairfax County Police Aviation responded to the scene to search for the armed subject. At approximately 12:50 a.m., Dec. 26, Richardson was located and surrendered to state police. He was taken into custody without further incident. State police did recover a firearm at the scene and marijuana from inside the stolen Ford Escape.
At the time of his arrest, it was discovered that Richardson had been shot during the exchange of gunfire with the trooper. He was immediately transported to Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg, Va., for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. He was treated and released later Tuesday morning.
No Virginia State Police troopers or motorists were injured during the pursuit or shooting. The Spotsylvania County and Caroline County sheriff’s offices responded to the scene to assist State Police.
The investigation into the incident remains ongoing at this time. State police are also in contact with multiple law enforcement agencies in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia concerning criminal incidents involving the male suspect.