Neighbors offer prayers for man taken hostage at Richmond gas station

hostage victim

RICHMOND, Va. — The man taken hostage at a Richmond gas station and then shot in the head at the conclusion of a police chase Monday afternoon was identified as Russell Turner, according to multiple police sources. Turner, a Senior Analyst at the BrownGreer law firm, was last listed in critical but stable condition at the hospital. Richmond Police have not yet officially released the shooting victim’s name, nor the name of the hostage-taking gunman. The gunman was also listed in critical, but stable condition

Russell Turner

Co-workers , neighbors offer prayers

BrownGreer, the law firm where Turner has worked since August 2008, released a statement Monday about their employees’ violent lunch break encounter.

“This is a tragic time for our BrownGreer family,” the statement began. “We cannot comment on what has happened. Our thoughts and prayers are with our employees who were the victims of this senseless violence, especially our employee who is in the hospital with his family.”

Neighbors also offered their thoughts and prayers with the Turner family during this difficult time.

“I wish him the best and a speedy recovery, when he comes home, I’m definitely going to go over there and welcome him back to the neighborhood, hope he be ok,” one neighbor said.

“We are there for them, we are there for the family, anything they need, we’re there to support. That is the kind of neighborhood this is,” added another.

The abduction and car-jacking

Turner and a BrownGreer co-worker were on lunch break , just pumping gas, when the crime unfolded. It was 12:30 p.m. Monday when police said a gunman approached them at the BP gas station on East Main Street near Tobacco Row and asked for money. The gas station is located less than a mile from the victims’ Rocketts Landing law office . When the men told the gunman they didn’t have money, police said the gunman forced the men back into their SUV and told them to drive to the bank.

Decision made inside bank leads to police chase

It was at the Bank of America, at 1111 East Main Street in downtown Richmond, where one victim was ordered to get out. He went into the bank, according police, and called 911. Police arrived and ordered the gunman to release his hostage, but instead the vehicle drove off, weaving through city streets.

Police chased the carjacked SUV throughout the city, as Turner drove.

“Be advised he has a weapon to the driver’s head,” crackled the police radio.

The pursuit ended with a crash in Church Hill near 25th and R streets.

“Shots fired! Shots fired!”

Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham said the gunman fired a weapon at officers after he shot the hostage in the head at point-blank range.

“The vehicle stopped, and the suspect sitting in the rear seat fired a single shot at our victim’s head,” Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham said.

Even though the chief said the gunman shot the victim, the official police update issued later that evening was not as specific.

“Henrico Police deployed spike strips near the intersection of Magnolia Street and Mechanicsville Turnpike in Henrico County, puncturing the SUV’s tires. The vehicle came to a stop after it failed to make a turn from 25th Street onto R Street and collided with a parked car,” a Richmond Police spokeswoman said. “Gunfire was exchanged between the suspect and officers. Both the victim and suspect were taken to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. An RPD officer also suffered a minor injury.”

Police said they were working to release information about the suspect. Anyone with additional information can submit a news tip here.