Richmond police arrest wanted suspect, investigate homicide, pot cultivation fire
on May 16, 2012
Richmond police have had a busy 18 hours.
Since 10 p.m. Tuesday, police and other emergency personnel have dealt with a seven-hour standoff with an attempted murder suspect, an early morning fire at an illegal marijuana cultivation warehouse and a deadly shooting at 10 a.m. Wednesday.
The pot fire is the lowest priority investigation, according to police.
“Detectives are trying to find out the information of who owns the building,” where the pot was being grown, said Richmond Police Lt. Bisa French. “But this isn’t going to take precedent right now. We have been up all night working on the more serious crimes.”
The homicide occurred in the 500 block of Eighth Street. French said that after a 27-year-old man parked a tan sedan in front of a residence, two suspects approached his vehicle on foot and began firing into the car, hitting the victim at least five times.
“We thought he was going to make it, but we heard that he died at the hospital in the last hour,” French said at about 3 p.m. “We don’t know if it’s gang related, but here is an ongoing feud between central and North Richmond right now.”
Police have been running extra patrols since Monday morning, when Orlando Yancy, 22, was killed in an early morning drive-by shooting in unincorporated North Richmond.
In an unrelated incident, at about 10 p.m. the night before, special investigation unit officers attempted to apprehend Todd Gillard, 26, who is wanted by police in connection with a nonfatal shooting at Hilltop Mall on February 1, and whom police suspect is a central Richmond gang member, French said.
Gillard fled into the nearby Crescent Park Apartment complex, where he took refuge in an apartment unit. SWAT officers were dispatched, French said. After several hours of telephone conversations between Gillard and police negotiators, Gillard surrendered without incident at about 5 a.m., French said.
As that standoff was winding down, the Richmond Fire Department responded to a 3:30 a.m. call reporting an electrical fire in a warehouse at Sixth Street and Ohio Avenue.
Responding personnel discovered about 1,000 marijuana plants and indoor cultivation lights, French said.
No one has been arrested.
“This is the biggest seizure of its kind in the city that I can recall,” French said.
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