A man is wounded after he was shot by a Fairfax County police officer Tuesday morning in Lorton, Virginia, the department said.
The officers responded to a call reporting a suspicious van parked on a suburban street and were about to have it towed when a man holding a rifle suddenly opened a side door, Chief of Police Kevin Davis said.
The man, a 34-year-old, raised the rifle at the two officers and was repeatedly ordered to put it down, Davis said. When he did not, one officer shot the man at least once.
“Police officers were presented with a deadly threat, and they acted," Davis said.
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The names of the man and officers were not immediately released.
One officer suffered a minor injury, Davis said. That same officer pulled a tow truck driver out of harm’s way when she saw the man’s rifle.
Officers responded to the report of a suspicious van in the 8300 block of Fitt Court at about 8 a.m., police said.
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Officers checked the vehicle’s license plate and found that the tags came back as stolen, police said. Officers were waiting for the van to be towed and had been on the scene for about an hour when the armed man emerged.
Officers had opened the back door of the van, which was packed with items, and apparently did not see the man, police said. It's possible he was hiding, they said.
One officer opened fire after the man emerged with the rifle, police said.
The man was taken to a hospital with injuries that initially were described as life-threatening. Davis later said he was in stable condition.
Investigators found that the man had a loaded rifle and two additional magazines of ammunition, Davis said. He also had a replica handgun in his jacket pocket, he said.
The man had been sought by Fairfax County police for failure to appear charges related to firearm and drug offenses, Davis said.
It was unclear if the officers had tried to look into the van. Heavily tinted windows plus dark curtains hung inside the van may have made it hard for the officers to see that the man was inside, Davis said.
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Chopper4 footage appeared to show a rifle and pistol alongside a vehicle. A number of officers and police vehicles filled the neighborhood.
Davis said he reviewed body camera footage and it will be released.