Charlottesville's First Murder Of 2006

By: Venton Blandin
By: Venton Blandin

June 19, 2006

One person is dead, and another is injured after being shot in Charlottesville over the weekend.

Police are continuing to investigate the city's first murder of the year, but they're also thanking quick-thinking doctors at the University of Virginia Medical Center for their help.

Charlottesville Police are thanking the staff inside UVA's emergency room for calling them around 3:00 a.m. Sunday to tell them two people walked inside with gunshot wounds. It was a courtesy call that is common practice just about everywhere.

"More often than not, they'll notify the call taker--they'll notify 911 just like anyone else would if they were calling for an emergency police response. They'll share the information that they know," said Chief Tim Longo of the Charlottesville Police Department.

In this particular case they knew there were two victims, a man and a woman, of an apparent shooting. Police are not sure of the connection between the two, but do know both were part of an argument at a club on Sunday morning.

"During which time, the person who has since been charged--Mr. Thurston, displayed a handgun, and fired a shot that struck Mr. Reaves in the abdomen," explained Chief Longo.

Chief Longo said the two people were shot while in the presence of others somewhere along the 900 block of South First street. After being shot around 3:00 a.m., both arrived at the University of Virginia Medical Center looking for help.

"They weren't brought in by medics, they weren't brought in by ambulance, or emergency medical personnel. They were transported there by private citizens," added Chief Longo.

21-year-old Lamont Antonio Reaves died at the hospital after being shot in the stomach. The woman, who was shot by the same bullet that hit Reaves, is expected to be alright.

Chief Longo said the alleged shooter, 22-year-old Jermaine Leon Thurston, left the scene. Minutes later, he made a call to police.

"..and indicated that he had been involved in a shooting. He told the call taker where he was, and stood-by for police to respond there," said Chief Longo.

Thurston was charged second degree murder, malicious wounding, and two counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a crime.

He appeared in court Monday morning where a judge denied his bond.

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