Fairfax police ID man killed by officer

A man who was fatally shot by a Fairfax County police officer Saturday night has been identified as Gray Alan Combs Jr., 22, of no fixed address, police said Monday.

Officers were called to an apartment in the 5700 block of Backlick Road shortly after 11 p.m. Saturday on a report of a wanted person hiding in a bedroom, Fairfax County police said.

When officers and a police dog encountered Combs, he threatened them with a sword and refused to comply with their commands, police said.

The officers opened fire with beanbag ammunition and live rounds, striking Combs, police said. They said the officers gave Combs medical attention, but he died at a local hospital.

Mary Ann Jennings, a police spokeswoman, said because the investigation is ongoing, the department could not say where Combs had been wounded, how he had threatened the officers and whether he was shot with beanbags before the live ammunition. The officers were not injured.

Police said Combs had seven outstanding warrants, which included felony child pornography counts. Fairfax County court records show Combs had felony convictions, including grand larceny.

Jennings said officers encountered Combs and another person in a car Friday night. Combs allegedly gave officers false identification and escaped after a foot chase.

Two of Combs’s family members said they had concerns about the way police handled the situation. They said Combs, originally from Evansville, Ind., was in Virginia for a jobs program. They acknowledged that he had a criminal record, but they said he was not violent.

“I can’t say if it was right or wrong,” Amber Combs, his half-sister, said of the shooting. “I am thankful that no one else got hurt. I’m horribly saddened I lost my brother over it. I think it could have been handled differently.”

The officer involved in the shooting, who has not been identified, was placed on routine administrative leave, police said. They said internal affairs will investigate the shooting.

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