Henrico County VA
Public Safety

Henrico fire chief named top in Southeast


Anthony E. McDowell, chief of the Henrico County Division of Fire, has been chosen as the 2015 Career Fire Chief of the Year by the Southeastern Association of Fire Chiefs.

McDowell, who has led the Division of Fire since October 2012, was selected from 15 nominees and will receive the award June 20 at the organization’s annual awards banquet in Birmingham, Ala.

“Henrico County is thrilled that Tony’s excellent public service has been recognized by his peers in the Southeastern Association of Fire Chiefs,” County Manager John A. Vithoulkas said. “Henrico enjoys a high quality of life in part because of the work and dedication of the men and women of the Division of Fire. As chief, Tony leads from the front and by example. He is driven by a passion for helping others and is guided by a commitment to his faith, his family and his community.”

Man shot in northern Henrico neighborhood

UPDATE: 3:42 P.M., OCT. 27 – A man was shot shortly after 1 p.m. Monday at the intersection of Byron Street and Jeter Street, near Mechanicsville Turnpike and Laburnum Avenue, in northern Henrico. Police responded to a call and found the man suffering from a gunshot wound. He was transported to VCU Medical Center with a non-life threatening injury.

Detectives and Forensic Personnel are investigating the shooting, but police do not have information about a suspect.

Police using new body cameras

Citizens soon will see an addition to the uniforms of Henrico County police officers, as body-mounted cameras will be issued to 400 officers in the county by Jan. 1, 2016.

Henrico Police officials began researching the cameras earlier this year, according to Henrico Police Lt. Chris Eley, and on Oct. 1 ordered 36 cameras for officers to test and determine which is the best match for the department’s needs.

“We’re just being progressive and wanted to get ahead of the curve,” Eley said about the division’s decision to implement cameras. “This will allow us to be more aware of our preconceived biases, how we talk and interact with people and [will] make us better public servants. We’re going to evaluate the system, work on our policy and usage and [on] what to expect from them.”

Support for victims of domestic violence

October is nationally known as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in recognition of the victims and survivors of the ongoing issue that affects one in four women. In Henrico, a collaborative group of organizations has gathered to provide services and events around the issue.

The Greater Richmond Regional Hotline – (804) 612-6126 – is the newest program to result from the Regional Collaborative, a group of five domestic and sexual violence service providers including the YWCA of Richmond, Hanover Safe Place, Safe Harbor, The James House and Project Hope at Quin Rivers.

The consolidated service provides all callers with a knowledgeable resource to explain options and conduct a safety assessment.

Police make arrest in fatal car-through-building incident

Henrico Police have arrested and charged a 23-year-old man in connection with an incident at a West End apartment complex Oct. 5 that killed a six-year-old boy.

Police charged Ronnie R. De La Cruz with reckless driving on private property Oct. 18. De La Cruz was driving a car that crashed through an apartment building at the Three Chopt West apartment complex in the 8800 block of Three Chopt Road. The car entered an apartment, trapping a woman and her two sons. One boy, Raul Exekiel Nicholas Vasquez, later died.

Henrico’s ninth rabies case this year confirmed

A raccoon that was killed during a fight with two dogs in a Far West End neighborhood Oct. 14 has tested positive for rabies.

The Henrico Police Animal Protection Unit responded to the 2800 block of Oak Point Lane, just off Church Road near John Rolfe Parkway, Monday after a caller reported the fight taking place in a backyard. Responding officers found the raccoon dead, and its remains were submitted to the state lab for rabies testing.

Chesterfield man cited after bringing gun to Richmond airport

A Chesterfield County man was cited and issued a summons by airport police on a state weapons charge Oct. 13 after Transportation Security Administration officers stopped him from bringing a loaded gun past the security checkpoint at the Richmond International Airport (RIC).

TSA officers detected the 9 mm caliber firearm, which was loaded with seven rounds in the resident’s carry-on bag as he was passing through the airport checkpoint. The TSA officer who was staffing the checkpoint X-ray machine detected the handgun and extra magazine inside the traveler’s carry-on bag as it passed along the conveyor belt.

No serious injuries reported in Henrico garage fire

One man was treated at the scene of a garage fire in Eastern Henrico for possible smoke inhalation Monday night, but no other injuries were reported.

The fire broke out in a garage in the 2300 block of Carlisle Avenue, near Williamsburg Road and the City of Richmond line, at about 6:30 p.m. Initial fire attack crews found the single-story garage heavily involved in fire 25 feet from a residence.

The first units to arrive were able to keep the fire contained to garage and prevent surrounding homes from catching fire.

Police arrest 2 in connection with July murder

Deonte Jenkins (left) and Christopher Pitts
Henrico Police have arrested and charged two men in connection with the murder of a 22-year-old McDonald's employee in Eastern Henrico in July.

On Tuesday, police arrested 19-year-old Deonte Jenkins of Colonial Heights, and he was indicted by a grand jury and charged with first degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, shooting during the commission of a felony and unlawfully wearing a mask in public in the commission of a felony.

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