- Congressman: McAuliffe victory means gun control a winning message
- Clinton aide admits soliciting disgraced D.C. fundraiser; says actions were legal
- Joel Osteen church victimized in $600K theft
- Obama goes shopping at Gap as minimum-wage thanks
- N.J. woman charged after client dies from black-market butt injections
- CIA chief Brennan ‘determined’ to speak out more this year
- Reset? What reset? U.S.-Russia ties at worst since Cold War
- 9/11 terror recruiter released in Syrian prisoner swap
- D.C. elections board gives green light to marijuana legalization initiative
- Elephants can tell difference between human languages: study
Witnesses testify in shooting of Alexandria officer
A grand jury will consider evidence next month in the case of a taxicab driver charged with shooting an Alexandria police officer in the head, after nearly a dozen witnesses testified in an Alexandria courtroom Wednesday, weaving together the narrative of the violent encounter and the ensuing high-speed chase.
But prosecutors did not offer a motive for the shooting during the nearly four-hour preliminary hearing. The defendant, Kashif Bashir, 27, of Woodbridge, Va., remained stoic, his brown eyes downcast or looking directly at the witness stand as he listened to bystanders and first-responders recall what they saw.
“I could tell he was severely injured,” said Alexandria Officer Francis Powers, who was first to arrive at the scene in Old Town, where Officer Peter Laboy was shot. “There was a waterfall of blood coming down his face.”
Police reports state that at about 11:44 a.m. Feb. 27, Officer Laboy, a 17-year veteran of the police force, responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle in the area of Wilkes and South St. Asaph streets, blocks from the bustling heart of Old Town Alexandria. Officer Laboy, 45, was on his motorcycle, while Mr. Bashir, police said, was behind the wheel of his Alexandria Yellow Cab minivan.
Shortly before the incident, Officer Powers arrived at a business in the 100 block of St. Asaph Street, where the owner said she saw a man acting suspiciously. She directed Officer Powers to look outside, where he saw Mr. Bashir double-parked and staring into the store. He attempted three times to get Mr. Bashir to pull over, but the cab driver drove off.
The officer radioed for backup, and Officer Laboy was the first to respond.
Exactly what happened in the few minutes that followed was not revealed during Wednesday’s hearing, but the confrontation left Officer Laboy lying on the ground, bleeding from a gunshot wound to the head and Mr. Bashir speeding south toward the border between Alexandria and Fairfax County.
First-grade teacher Erin Gagnon told the court she was outside for recess at the Lyles-Crouch Traditional Academy when she saw Officer Laboy stop his motorcycle along the same block as the school.
“I heard a gun when he dismounted,” she said. “I saw his head slightly go back and he fell forward to the ground. I yelled ‘run’ to my students to get inside as soon as possible.”
While emergency responders worked to keep Officer Laboy alive, other police officers testified that they followed the taxicab nearly to Mount Vernon, watching it weave in and out of traffic before careening into another vehicle and coming to a stop.
When officers got Mr. Bashir out of the car, they found a loaded semiautomatic handgun and several cans of beer in the car, at least one of them empty.
Mr. Bashir, a native of Pakistan, was charged with malicious wounding of a law enforcement officer and use of a firearm. He has been held without bond since his arrest.
Relatives of Mr. Bashir and Officer Laboy sat in the crowded courtroom but left the courthouse without comment. Prosecutors did not say whether Mr. Bashir was drunk, but they left open the possibility that Officer Laboy could testify if the case went to trial.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Meredith Somers is a Metro reporter for The Washington Times. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Three Gulf countries sink 'Noah' before movie's launch
- Lenten season marks big business for seafood sector
- ACU at 50: Strong and looking ahead
- Ready for spring? D.C. cherry blossoms to bloom by mid-April
- MOVIE REVIEW: 'Son of God'
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
An America drowning in red ink is the land of the free no more
- Inside the Beltway: A new interest in Rahm Emanuel for 2016?
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Bill Clinton poses for photo with Bunny Ranch prostitutes
- David Jolly wins in Florida, GOP keeps swing district seat
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- 80 people publicly executed across North Korea for films, Bibles
- Liam Neeson tells NYC mayor to 'man up' in horse carriage fight
- House Democrats trying to force unemployment insurance vote
- Atheists sue to remove 'Ground Zero Cross' from 9/11 museum
- Florida lawmakers move to wipe corrupt 'Boss Hogg' town from map
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again