Special agent clarifies FBI's role in Virginia Beach mass shooting criminal investigation

Posted at 11:33 PM, Feb 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-06 15:19:46-05

CHESAPEAKE, Va. — Officials at the FBI's Norfolk Field Office are clarifying the agency's role in the criminal investigation into the Virginia Beach mass shooting.

The mass shooting happened at the Virginia Beach Municipal Center on May 31, 2019, when a gunman took the lives of 12 city employees.

Martin Culbreth, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Norfolk Field Office, said in a statement Wednesday that the agency's role has been to help the Virginia Beach Police Department by providing investigative support as requested. Culbreth says at the request of police, the FBI conducted a number of interviews with victims and witnesses, a digital forensic analysis of the shooter's work computer and the forensic crime scene investigation and evidence recovery operation in Building 2, where the shooting took place.

Culbreth says the FBI did not seize and does not possess a personal laptop owned by the mass shooter. He says the FBI is not aware of the existence of a personal laptop belonging to the shooter.

Culbreth added that the FBI obtained the shooter's city-owned work computer during the evidence collection process and immediately created a mirrored digital image of the hard drive, which contained the computer's contents. The FBI gave the image containing the work computer's contents to Virginia Beach Police on June 1, 2019, for investigation. He says it was the only computer tower the FBI collected.