CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) – Chesapeake Commonwealth’s Attorney Matthew Hamel announced Thursday that the state trooper’s use of deadly force was justified in the police pursuit on Interstate 664 in November 2021 that left two people dead.
According to a letter from the Hamel, an investigation was launched after 45-year-old Brian Price was shot and killed by a Virginia State Police trooper during an altercation after the police pursuit. The other victim, 47-year-old Amity Grey, was the passenger in Price’s vehicle and was killed in the crash.
The investigation showed that police were called around 4 p.m. to a convenience store located on Jefferson Avenue in Newport News. Store personnel reported that a man was being belligerent and appeared to be intoxicated on drugs. Personnel also said that the man assaulted a cashier.
When officers arrived on the scene, an employee from the store pointed out a white Chevrolet Cobalt that the man was driving on Jefferson Avenue. A pursuit was then initiated.
The dynamic of the pursuit changed when an officer observed both Price and a woman, later identified as Grey, in the vehicle. When the officer pulled up alongside the vehicle at a red light, Grey claimed to be a Chesapeake police officer and made references to “kids being kidnapped.” He also claimed to see Price making physical moves to restrain Grey.
A family member of Grey told 10 On Your Side after the incident that she and Price were dating.
As the pursuit continued, Newport News police called state police for backup. A trooper then took the lead in attempting to pull over the vehicle. Price then made contact with the trooper’s car, lost control, and tumbled down an embankment.
Price fled on foot from the crash. Grey was pronounced dead at the scene.
The trooper found Price walking along the westbound lanes of Route 58 shortly after the crash and approached him on foot.
In an interview, the trooper says he was struck in the chest with a “pipe-like object” that caused him to fall onto his back. He then looked up to see Price standing above him with the object. The trooper then shot Price in the hip three times.
Price was pronounced dead at the scene.
According to Hamel, the facts of the incident show that the trooper lawfully performed his duties at the time and that no further actions will be sought.