2 Virginia officers on leave after shooting man armed with BB gun

Posted at 1:46 PM, Mar 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-01 13:46:01-05

A pair of Virginia police officers are on administrative leave following the fatal shooting of an 18-year-old African-American man armed with a BB gun, according to Roanoke County Police Chief Howard Hall.

Kionte DeShaun Spencer, 18, was shot twice Friday night after refusing commands to drop his gun, Hall told reporters Monday.

The officers responded to a report of a man on the road in suburban Roanoke, wearing a bandana and waving and pointing a gun at passing cars, according to Hall.

The man refused orders to drop the weapon and continued walking, police said.

Attempts to Taser Spencer were “ineffective,” Hall said. He was shot in the collarbone and hip area after turning at the officers with the weapon still in his hand, according to Hall, and died later at a hospital.

Spencer, who lived in a group home, was enrolled at Hidden Valley High School, police said.

Hall, describing the use of deadly force as a “tragic situation,” said criminal and administrative investigations were under way.

He did not disclose the officers’ race.

The shooting occurred in a busy area and investigators had contacted a number of witnesses, according to Hall.

Police released photos of Spencer walking along a road with the pistol in his hand. They also provided images of the BB gun alongside a similar-looking 9mm handgun.

Results of the criminal investigation will be turned over to local prosecutors, police said.