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'It shook me to my core. I can only imagine what it did to those kids': Police chief sends emotional message after mass shooting

Chief Boone
Posted at 3:12 PM, Nov 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-04 21:20:38-04

NORFOLK, Va. - Norfolk Police Chief Larry Boone addressed the senseless deadly mass shooting that took place Wednesday night. He said he used the term mass shooting because it was one and he wanted to bring attention to it.

Chief Boone said if it had been anywhere else than in the area where it happened, which was the Young Terrace community, there would be rows of people showing up.

“The reality is mass shootings happen in our challenging communities every day, so I was intentional when I used that term because I knew I would get a handful of people to draw some attention to this,” he said.

Boone explained that when he responded to the scene Wednesday night he came across a group of girls. He said, “It struck me how cold they were.”

Boone said they shared stories about other gun violence victims who have also recently been shot. He said they all had stories about family members who had been victims.

As he responded last night, Chief Boone said kids were there looking at the scene and said this morning they probably had to walk to school through it and go to bed “on it.”

“Shame on us,” he said adding, “How many times do we have to do and say the same things over and over and over before we do something? Absent of being performative.”

Boone got emotional, saying, “Every freaking night. How long are we going to be performative and say pretty words? Where’s the action? This situation was created years ago, strategically, and it’s going to take some strategic action to undo it. From all of us - Black, White, LGBTQ, Hispanic, Asian.”

Finally, looking into the News 3 camera, Boone and raised his voice, saying, "That’s the reality, folks. It breaks my heart to look at those young kids over there trying to process what they are looking at. I’m a grown man with 30 years police experience, and it shook me to my core. I can only imagine what it did to those kids. Yeah, we are emotional now, but what are you going to do 48 hours from now?”

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Related: Neighbors: Mother of Norfolk mass shooting victim killed after coming to help injured daughter