A 21-year-old North Carolina man is facing charges in a shooting that left three people injured Sunday afternoon in South Boston and prompted the local school system to provide additional resources for students and staff members.
It all started shortly after 3:30 p.m. when officers with the South Boston Police Department responded to the area of Llewellyn Avenue and College Street for a report of multiple people in the street and a person suffering from a gunshot wound, South Boston Police Chief Bryan L. Young wrote in a news release.
Young noted the gunfire escalated following a fight.
“Officers arrived on scene to find two female victims and one male victim, all suffering from gunshot wounds,” he said. “All three victims were transported from the scene by ambulance.”
Two people were hospitalized in stable conditions and another was treated and released.
“The victims were 23, 31 and 35 years old,” he told The Gazette on Monday.
Officers interviewed several witnesses and collected pistol cartridge casings and other related evidence from the scene, Young said.
Following those interviews, officers arrested 21-year-old Daquan E. Valentine of Franklinton, North Carolina.
The suspect is charged with three counts of malicious wounding and one count of use of a firearm in the commission of a Felony.
On Sunday night, police found a 2017 Nissan Altima on Willingham Avenue, and officers took possession of the vehicle police believe was involved in the shooting.
About 12 hours later in the same area, gunfire hit a home and vehicle, police reported. There were no injuries in that incident.
“The South Boston Police Department would like to thank the community for all of their assistance in this investigation,” Young said. “In addition, the department would like to thank the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office, Virginia State Police and the Halifax/South Boston Gang and Narcotic Task Force for their assistance.”
The incident rattled the community to the point where Halifax County Public Schools Superintendent Amy Huskin sent a message Sunday night notifying parents that an additional “level of security” in the schools would be in place this week.
Huskin told The Gazette that safety is her first — and foremost — concern.
“The message sent out Sunday evening and subsequently the follow up message on Monday morning was in response to the College Avenue incidents,” she explained.
Huskin confirmed no one with the school system — students or employees — were directly involved.
“However, we know anytime something this large happens in our community, it raises the level of concern for both parents and students,” she wrote in an email to The Gazette. “We also know some of our students may have had friends or family members involved in the incident and that was the reason for providing additional counseling support.”
The superintendent said she “felt it was appropriate to be transparent with everyone letting them know our goal is always to keep everyone safe and to provide extra resources such as additional bag checks and law enforcement presence in our schools this week.”
The shooting investigation is still ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the police department at 434-575-7203.