Suspects in Hampton police shooting now charged in murders of two Virginia Beach fathers

Posted at 8:59 AM, Jun 15, 2017

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Two men arrested in a shooting involving Hampton Police that occurred Monday afternoon have now been charged in the murders of two men in Virginia Beach.

James Cole Gregory (left) and Leonard Allen Morrison III (right)

The men are also believed to be suspects in a Chesapeake GameStop robbery that occurred on Monday morning.

Virginia Beach Police say they responded to a home in the 2200 block of Archives Court on Sunday, June 11 just before 12 p.m. after receiving reports of two unresponsive men.

Police arrived to find 28-year-old John Andrew Rathjen and 23-year-old Rayvone Sharome Miles, both deceased.

James Cole Gregory, 20, and Leonard Allen Morrison III, 29, have both been charged with two counts of First Degree Murder, two counts of Robbery and four counts of Use of a Firearm.

John Rathjen, 28

Rayvone Miles, 23

A close friend of Rathjen and Miles says the two were roommates, renting the home where police found them.

She says they were like family to her.

"It just crushed me, because I'm so used to seeing them," says Shameka Covil.

She says Gregory was also a close friend to all of them. She called him Sunday after hearing about the murder, not knowing she was speaking to the man who might be responsible.

"I had to call him just to see if he knew, and he acted like he didn't know, so now it's just kind of crazy that I'm finding out that he's the one behind it."

Both Rathjen and Miles spent time with the Union Mission in Norfolk prior to living in Virginia Beach.

Director of Public Relations, Linda Jones, says Miles was a part of their development program for young men between ages 18 and 25 and he flourished.

"He told us it just turned his life around," she says. "It just devastated us and others that knew him here, it was very sad to here that, because he left on such a positive note."

Rathjen's family released a statement to News 3 about his murder:

"Our family is devastated by the sudden, senseless loss of our son and brother, John. We are an incredibly close family of which John was a very integral part. His smile, sense of humor, and big heart will be sorely missed. Our hearts break even more for his daughters, Genesis and Madison, who were John's world.

We are so grateful for the outpouring of love and support we have felt during this difficult and sorrowful time, but we do ask for continued privacy as we grieve and say goodbye.

Lastly, we are eternally thankful for the hard work of the Virginia Beach Police Department in their continued efforts to help bring closure to this tragedy."

Gregory is currently in custody in Hampton on charges related to Monday's incident.

Morrison is currently hospitalized after being shot by a Hampton Police officer during Monday's incident.

A GoFundMe was set up to help get Miles home to New York City for a proper burial.


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