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ACLU, VB NAACP, Del. Jones request independent investigation in the shooting death of Donovon Lynch

Virginia Beach and Hampton Roads community leaders do not want the Virginia Beach Police Department to investigate themselves.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Several questions remain in the three separate Virginia Beach shootings that happened over the weekend. The Virginia Beach Police Department and its commonwealth’s attorney are investigating the incidents. Specifically, the Virginia Beach officer who shot and killed 25-year-old Donovon Lynch.

Several organizations are calling for justice and requesting the investigation be turned over to an outside agency.

The ACLU of Virginia wants another commonwealth’s attorney to take over the investigation. 

A Virginia Beach Police Officer shot and killed Lynch at Virginia Beach's Oceanfront Friday night. 

The group tweeted, "Friends should not investigate friends. We urge the @VBPD to release the identity of the officer involved, any videos available of the incident, and request an independent investigation and review by another Commonwealth's attorney." 

“We do not believe the police can investigate themselves," said Virginia Beach NAACP President Dr. Karen Pruden. 

Pruden is calling for action and change with the Virginia Beach Police Department. The officer who shot Lynch did not activate his body camera.

On Sunday, Pruden sent out a release demanding the city to develop a Citizens Review Board.

“So we’re looking for an independent body. A body that has full investigative powers as well as subpoena powers" said Pruden. 

On Saturday, Virginia Beach Police chief Paul  Neudigate said the commonwealth’s attorney office is overseeing the investigation. But he didn’t rule out bringing in an outside agency.

“We can consider it. Right now that had not been our historical practice. There is some benefit to an objective investigation," said Neudigate. 

However, Neudigate expressed concerns about handing over the case.

“We’re also concerned about the ability to be immediate, accountable, and transparent. So if we do turn over that investigation to VSP I’m not able to stand in front of my community and answer the hard questions," said Neudigate.

Pruden hopes change is coming to her hometown of Virginia Beach.

“I would like to see it be a very safe place for everyone and I would also like to see law enforcement officials be held accountable when they do not follow established procedures when it comes to doing their job," said Pruden. 

Delegate Jay Jones is also calling for another investigation from the Attorney General to find out what happened and why the body camera was not activated.

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