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Few details in fatal shooting of man by Fairfax police officer

The Blazer driven by a man who was shot to death by police rests near a car that collided with it during the afternoon incident.
The Blazer driven by a man who was shot to death by police rests near a car that collided with it during the afternoon incident. (Jahi Chikwendiu/the Washington Post)
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By Tom Jackman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 14, 2009

A man was shot to death Friday afternoon by a Fairfax County police officer during a traffic stop on Route 1 near the Capital Beltway, police said, and they could not explain why the officer fired his gun.

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Police did not release the dead man's name, and details of the shooting were still being pieced together. The shooting occurred in the northbound lanes of Route 1 between Huntington Avenue and Fort Hunt Road about 12:38 p.m., said Officer Bud Walker, a police spokesman.

A Fairfax officer was trying to stop a green Chevrolet Blazer sport-utility vehicle, Walker said. He said he did not know whether the driver emerged from his car or whether he had a weapon or otherwise threatened the officer. The officer was not hurt.

After he was stopped, the driver of the Blazer headed north on Route 1, but Walker did not know whether he was shot before or after he fled.

After the driver was shot, his Blazer collided with the driver's side of a Nissan Sentra entering Route 1 from an access road, Walker said. The Sentra's driver was not seriously hurt.

The man who was shot was taken to Inova Mount Vernon Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, Walker said.

Only one officer was involved in the shooting, but other officers were on the scene, Walker said. There were no passengers in the Blazer, but three small dogs were inside. Animal control officers took the dogs.

Traffic on northbound Route 1 was diverted onto Huntington Avenue until 10 p.m., but southbound Route 1 was open.

Homicide detectives, internal affairs investigators and Fairfax Police Chief David M. Rohrer all were at the scene of the shooting.

The incident was the second fatal shooting involving Fairfax officers this year. In April, an officer shot a man who was dragging a naked woman to a car at knifepoint in the Fairfax City area.


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