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Manassas police officer-involved shooting ‘justified,’ BB gun found

The investigation into the shooting of an 18-year-old man by a Manassas police officer is over. 

From a Prince William County police press release: 

“Upon reviewing the details of the shooting investigation involving the two Manassas City police officers, Prince William County Commonwealth’s Attorney, Paul Ebert, ruled the shooting was justified. Commonwealth Attorney Paul Ebert stated, “In my opinion, the officers involved were in reasonable fear of death or serious harm when they used lethal force and therefore their actions were justified.”

A Manassas City police officer pursued a car driven by 18-year-old Luis Daniel Torres Molina, of Woodbridge, from the city to George Helwig Memorial Park just off Route 234 and shot him early Friday. A 911 caller told Manassas police they heard shots fired, and then described seeing a black Ford Explorer with tinted windows. 

Manassas police tried to stop the SUV at 1:09 a.m. but the driver fled police leading them on a pursuit that ended at the Prince William County park. 

Today, police said they found a BB-gun inside the SUV. A 15-year-old girl in the passenger seat was unharmed, was determined to have run away from her Woodbridge home, and was returned home by police. 

Torres-Molina was treated for his gunshot wound and released into the custody of the Prince William-Manassas Regional Adult Detention Center.

He has a preliminary court date of July 17. 

“While our formal Internal Affairs investigation reviewing all aspects of this case is ongoing, it is clear from the investigations conducted by Prince William County Police, the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office and Manassas City Police that the officers acted appropriately and lawfully in their efforts to apprehend this potentially dangerous subject,” stated Manassas Police Chief Doug Keen in a press release. “Officers do not desire to use lethal force, but in these rare cases, they must act quickly and decisively to protect themselves and the community. I am thankful that no residents or officers were harmed during this unfortunate incident.”

The Prince William County Police Department led the criminal investigation into the police shooting.

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