ACPD: Juveniles charged in connection with shootings, car thefts

Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 2:38 PM EST
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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - Albemarle County police say seven juveniles and three adults are charged in connection with a string of gang-related shootings and car thefts.

“Since May 2022, Albemarle County has experienced a significant rise in motor vehicle thefts and shootings,” Sargeant Tavis Coffin said Thursday, December 1.

Investigators say a total of seven people have been shot and 29 vehicles have been stolen over the last several months. All but one of the vehicles have been recovered, and three of the eight guns had been reported stolen. They believe most of these crimes are connected to several groups of self-identifying gangs.

“Most of these incidents have occurred in residential areas located between Barracks Road and Rio Road,” Sgt. Coffin said.

Police have arrested 19-year-old Meleak Domorion Clark of Farmville, 19-year-old Jalonnie Antonio Henson of Charlottesville, and 18-year-old Devontae Markel Johnson of Albemarle. All three are charged with:

  • 3 counts of use or display of a firearm in committing a felony.
  • 3 counts of aggravated malicious wounding.
  • Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon
  • Shooting from vehicles so as to endanger persons
  • Discharging firearms or missiles within or at a building or dwelling house.

ACPD says the juveniles - all around middle-to-high-school-age - are facing charges that include possession of an automatic weapon, possession of a stolen firearm, and possession of a stolen vehicle.

The Albemarle County Police Department is asking for witnesses to contact it at (434) 296-5807 or call Crime Stoppers at 434-977-4000 or email CrimeStoppers@albemarle.org. You can remain anonymous.

The Albemarle County Police Department provided the following timeline of incidents:

  • July 27, 4:05 p.m., intersection of Saxton Court and Knight Court - Report of a juvenile who was shot.
  • August 16, 3:10 a.m., 700 block of Queens Court - Reports of multiple occupied residences and vehicles struck by gunfire.
  • August 19, 4:40 p.m., 400 block of Burgoyne Road - Report of a juvenile who was shot.
  • August 24, 11 p.m., 900 block of Old Brook Road - Reports of multiple vehicles and occupied residences being struck by gunfire. One bystander was struck by a vehicle while attempting to flee the area.
  • September 14, 5:30 p.m., 2300 block of North Berkshire Road - Report of an adult shot during a drive-by shooting.
  • September 22, 7 p.m., 800 block of Mallside Forest Court - Report of a drive-by shooting where three juveniles were struck by gunfire. In addition, occupied residences were hit.
  • November 07, 9 p.m., 400 block of Burgoyne Road - Report of an armed robbery and shots fired, one juvenile was shot.

The Albemarle County Police Department provided the following crimes stats:

  • Part I crimes (Murder, Rape, Robbery, Agg. Assault) are down 4% compared to the 3-year average from 2019-2021.
  • Albemarle County has seen 90 Part I crime cases so far in 2022, the 3-year average for the same time period is 93.33.
  • Comparing 2022 to an average of the previous three years (2019-2021), ACPD has seen a 15% increase in calls for service for verified shots fired.
  • 131 incidents through November 2022, the 3-year average for the same time period is 114.
  • ACPD often receives calls for service for “shots fired” that are ultimately found to be fireworks or a vehicle exhaust backfiring. Those “unverified” calls are not included in these stats.
  • Reported cases of motor vehicle thefts are up 61% through November 2022.
  • ACPD has investigated 96 motor vehicle theft cases so far in 2022, the average over the previous 3 years for the same time period is 59.67.

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