PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Congressman Bobby Scott (D-3rd District) has formally asked for the Justice Department to investigate two recent high-profile cases in Hampton Roads involving Black men and police, the fatal police shooting of Donovon Lynch in Virginia Beach and the threatening traffic stop of Army 2nd Lt. Caron Nazario in Windsor.
Scott said he has also spoken in person with Attorney General Merrick Garland about launching probes into the incidents, in addition to sending a formal request in writing.
“We deserve transparency, accountability, and most of all, the truth about these incidents,” Scott said.
Lynch was killed by a Virginia Beach police officer on March 26 amid several shootings that night at the Oceanfront. The officer who shot Lynch, who didn’t activate a body camera at the time, has been placed on administrative leave pending the investigation. In a statement Wednesday, Lynch’s family said they have a growing list of unanswered questions of the fatal shooting, including why Lynch’s body was moved that night.
In the case of Nazario, Windsor’s police chief said Wednesday that some of the conduct of his officers during the traffic stop “upset” him, but he doesn’t believe the lieutenant should get an apology.
On Dec. 5 2020, two officers pulled over Nazario, who is Black and Latino, in Windsor after his license plate wasn’t immediately seen. The stop escalated to where both officers drew their guns and one pepper-sprayed Nazario. The officer who pepper sprayed Nazario has since been fired, but it wasn’t until after the story was first broken by the Virginian-Pilot.
In a lawsuit, Nazario is asking for at least $1 million in damages and for the court to rule that the two officers involved in the stop violated his rights, including rights under the Fourth Amendment.
“The truth must come to light and change is imperative so every resident in Hampton Roads can have confidence that police are acting within the bounds of the law and loved ones can make it home safely to their families,” Scott said in the request.
This article is breaking and will be updated.