Graduation shooting VA news: Shooter Amari Pollard, 19, motivated by ‘ongoing dispute’ with victim, police say

Seven shots, at least two dead at Richmond high school graduation

Amari Pollard, the 19-year-old suspect in the shooting attack at a high school graduation ceremony in Richmond, Virginia, was charged Wednesday morning and charged with two counts of second-degree murder, according to the Richmond Police Department (RPD). .

Seven people were shot dead in the incident on Virginia Commonwealth University’s Monroe Park campus on Tuesday afternoon. Shawn Jackson, 18, and his stepfather Lorenzo Smith, 36, died from their injuries.

“Investigators have determined that the shootings were not an accidental act but the result of an ongoing dispute between Pollard and Jackson,” RPD said The Independent in an opinion.

The burst of gunfire sparked a stampede as graduates and guests tried to flee the area, a moment of panic captured in at least one video that was subsequently posted to Facebook.

“This shouldn’t be happening anywhere,” lamented the city’s mayor, Levar Stoney.

“Whether it’s in Richmond, in Virginia, or in the United States, that shouldn’t happen anywhere. A child should be able to go to their graduation, walk around and enjoy the achievement with their friends and family.”


WATCH: Final Press Conference

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 10:00 am


GoFundMe raised over $20,000 for victims’ families

More than $20,000 was raised for the families of victims of the Richmond high school graduation shooting.

Tameeka Jackson-Smith is the wife of 36-year-old Lorenzo Smith and the mother of 18-year-old Shawn Jackson. Both Smith and Jackson were killed during the mass shooting.

A GoFundMe was created for the benefit of her and Jackson’s nine-year-old sister, who sustained injuries after being hit by a vehicle during the shooting.

“This GoFundMe will serve as support for unexpected expenses, bereavement support, medical bills and financial support for the family during this tragic time,” reads the GoFundMe description.

GoFundMe is an official fundraiser, as confirmed by a GoFundMe spokesperson.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 09:00


Richmond Public Schools high school graduations have been cancelled

Richmond Public Schools have posted a notice on their website informing students, families and staff that the school will remain closed on Wednesday June 7 and graduations will be canceled this week.

“RPS schools and offices are closed today, Wednesday 7th June. All of this week’s school graduations have also been cancelled. RPS will be providing further updates on the postponement of commencement ceremonies shortly,” Richmond Public Schools wrote.

They also offered condolences to the victims and families of the shooting that killed two and injured five others, and offered resources for people or children who need to speak to a counselor.

“In addition, the RBHA Mobile Crisis Unit, along with other partners, will serve as support for RPS families and staff. Mental health support and counseling services will be available today from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Huguenot Community Center.”

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 08:00


Shooting suspect charged

According to Richmond police, Amari Pollard, 19, of Henrico County, was charged Wednesday morning and charged with two counts of second-degree murder.

Mr Pollard is suspected of being connected to the Richmond high school graduating shooting in which seven people were shot dead and two died.

The two dead victims are 18-year-old Shawn Jackson and his stepfather, 36-year-old Lorenzo Smith.

“Investigators have determined that the shootings were not an arbitrary act but were the result of an ongoing dispute between Pollard and Jackson,” Richmond Police Department said in a statement The Independent.

(Richmond Police Department)

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 07:00


“It shouldn’t be happening anywhere,” says the Richmond Mayor

Mayor Levar Stoney of Richmond, Virginia offered his condolences to members of the community affected by the shooting, including the victims.

“Is nothing sacred anymore?” Mr Stoney said in a news conference on Tuesday.

“It shouldn’t be happening anywhere. Overall. Whether it’s Richmond, Virginia or the United States, that shouldn’t be happening anywhere. A child should be able to go to their graduation, walk around and enjoy the achievement with their friends and family.”

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 06:00


Suspect identified as 19-year-old in Richmond high school graduation shooting

The suspect in the shooting at the high school graduation in Richmond, Virginia, has been identified as 19-year-old Amari Ty’Jon Pollard.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 05:00


Police are asking the public for information, videos and photos

The interim chief of police for the Richmond Police Department urged the public to provide police with any leads or photos as they continue their investigation into the high school graduation shooting.

Photos and videos from the crime scene were submitted to investigators by the public. Investigators are asking anyone who has crime scene pictures or video to submit them to the FBI website created to capture images as part of this investigation:

You can also contact the Richmond Police Department Tip Line for more information: (804) 646-6741.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 04:00


WATCH: Recap of the horrific shooting

7 shots, at least 2 dead at high school graduation in Richmond, Virginia.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 03:00


ICYMI: A high school gathered to celebrate graduation. Then two people were killed

ICYMI: Two people were killed and five others injured in a shooting after a high school graduation in Richmond, Virginia on Tuesday.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 02:00


Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin reflects on the Richmond shooting

“As we struggle to fully understand this tragedy, our hearts break for those whose lives were lost today. Tonight we mourn the loss of her classmates, our neighbors and the entire Richmond community,” Mr. Youngkin wrote on Twitter.

Ariana BaioJune 8, 2023 01:00

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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