Portsmouth police officer fatally shoots teen in Wal-Mart parking lot


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PORTSMOUTH, Virginia — A Portsmouth police officer responding to a call about shoplifting shot and killed an 18-year-old man in a Wal-Mart parking lot on Wednesday morning, authorities said.

Virginia State Police are investigating the shooting at the request of the Portsmouth Police Department, while Portsmouth police are conducting an internal investigation.

Initial reports indicated that the victim was crossing the parking lot on foot when a struggle ensued, said Virginia State Police spokeswoman Sgt. Michelle Anaya. It wasn't immediately clear how many shots were fired or whether the victim was armed. Police have not released the identity of the police officer or the victim.

It was not immediately clear whether there was any video of the shooting. If such video is available, Anaya said it would be considered part of the investigation and would not be publicly released. Ultimately, the Portsmouth Commonwealth's Attorney will determine whether any criminal charges are filed against the officer.

The officer has been placed on administrative leave, pending the outcomes of the investigations, said Portsmouth Detective Misty Holley.

Wednesday's incident was the second fatal police-involved shooting in Portsmouth within a month. On March 24, an officer fatally shot a drug suspect who fled when police attempted to question him.

Virginia State Police also are investigating that shooting.

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