May 18, 2017The Richmond Police Department officer who was involved in the fatal shooting earlier this week of Jaison Fitzgerald, 29, of the 1900 block of Accommodation Street has been identified as Officer Cleophas Williams.
“I am saddened by the fact that the Richmond Police Department is having to investigate a case like this one,” said RPD Chief Alfred Durham. “Using lethal force is one of the most difficult decisions a police officer must make in the line of duty. My thoughts are with Officer Williams, Jaison Fitzgerald and their families.”The shooting occurred shortly after 6 p.m., Monday, May 15 during a traffic stop in the 3800 block of Lynnhaven Avenue.
Officer Williams was not wearing a body-worn camera. The RPD has been unable to locate any video of the shooting, either from other officers or bystanders.
“It has been my policy to release the names of officers involved in fatal shootings. I have done it in the past,” said Chief Durham. “But, we must first assess the situation and determine the possibility of retaliation. We have completed that portion of the investigation which is why I am releasing Officer Williams’ name at this time.”Officer Williams is a two year veteran of the force. He remains on administrative leave.
The Department’s Force Investigation Team (FIT), comprised of Major Crimes Division detectives, are investigating the fatal shooting of Fitzgerald and will present their findings to the Commonwealth’s Attorney for review and a finding.
RPD detectives have spoken to several residents of the neighborhood and ask anyone who may have seen, heard or took of video of the incident to contact Detective W. Thompson at (804) 646-3925 or by calling Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or www.7801000.com or by texting Crime Stoppers at 274637, using the keyword “iTip” followed by your tip. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.