News 4's Pat Collins reports on the shooting death of a 22-year old man following an alleged confrontation with an off-duty Arlington Co. Sheriff's deputy early Wednesday morning. Family members said the victim had just left a party at his aunt's house to celebrate his cousin's new contract to play with the WNBA's Washington Mystics.
An Arlington County sheriff's deputy is on administrative leave following a fatal shooting in Alexandria.
Off-duty Deputy Craig Patterson, a 17-year veteran with the sheriff's office, got into a dispute with 22-year-old Julian Dawkins on the corner of Lynnhaven Drive and Evans Lane around 12:45 a.m. Wednesday, Alexandria police said.
At some point during the dispute, Dawkins was shot. Police said Patterson stayed on scene, but Dawkins was pronounced dead at an area hospital.
The area where Dawkins was shot was just four houses down from Dawkins' aunt's home, where the family was celebrating his cousin Tierra Ruffin-Pratt's contract with the WNBA's Washington Mystics.
Dawkins is a graduate of T.C. Williams High School.
One woman, who asked to not be identified, said she heard the shot and the argument that proceeded it.
"The man ran down the street yelling, 'I'll be back. You best believe I'll be back.' ...maybe about three, four minutes later, I heard one 'pop'...I rushed outside, and I saw a young man laying in the people's yard not moving, not breathing, not nothing..."
Patterson called 911 and reported the shooting. Police say the gun used was Patterson's service weapon.
Dawkin's mother, Gwenetta Pratt-Miller, said she's been told very little about her son's death.
"Something ain't right, something ain't right...something is definitely not right," she lamented.
Investigators say there's no indication of a prior connection between Patterson and Dawkins.
Patterson was questioned by police and released. No charges have been filed at this time.
Alexandria police say their investigation into the incident is ongoing.
Dawkins' great uncle was Nolan Dawkins, the first African American Circuit Court judge in Alexandria.
Dawkins worked as a shuttle driver for PBS NewsHour, which released the following statement Wednesday afternoon:
The PBS NewsHour and MacNeil/Lehrer Productions learned this morning that our shuttle driver, Julian Dawkins, was fatally shot last night in Alexandria, VA. Julian had worked for the NewsHour since June 2010. He was a valued member of the NewsHour’s staff and a friend to all who knew him. “Julian was a hard-worker and very dedicated to the NewsHour,” said Linda Winslow, Executive Producer. “We are deeply saddened by the news of Julian’s death and our condolences, thoughts and prayers are with his family.”