Officers from Newport News Police South Precinct were dispatched to the Pondo Café at approximately 4:51 AM on Saturday, April 29, 2017 for a report of a disorderly person inside of the establishment. When officers arrived on scene, they attempted to enter the business, but the doors were locked. While outside of the establishment, officers heard gunfire coming from inside the business. Emergency Communications Dispatchers were able to make contact with persons inside the Pondo Café and obtained information that there were three people being held hostage by an armed man who had already shot one of the hostages. When patrol officers were not able to make entry, knowing someone was suffering from a gunshot wound and hearing additional shots fired, a tactical situation was called and the NNPD Tactical Operations Unit (TOU) responded.
Once on scene, the TOU was able to breach the door and enter the business. When the armed suspect saw officers he raised his firearm and pointed it at one of the responding officers. One officer fired his weapon, striking and killing the suspect. The investigation revealed the deceased was armed with a loaded firearm.
The deceased suspect has been identified as Caleb “CJ” Jackson, Jr., 35-years-old of the 100 block of Pear Ave. in Newport News.
As standard protocol, we will not be releasing the name of the officer involved until the investigation has been completed and the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office makes a final ruling. The officer involved in the shooting is a 22-year veteran of the Newport News Police Department. He has served on the NNPD TOU for 20 years and is a highly regarded TOU team trainer and leader. He has been involved in one other fatal shooting which occurred during a tactical situation and was deemed justified by the Newport News Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office. The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave.
The other two hostages were not injured and were rescued by officers after the threat no longer existed. The shooting victim was transported to a local hospital and is listed in stable condition.
In a statement, Newport News Police Chief Richard Myers said, “We deeply regret that it was necessary to use lethal force in this incident and we extend our deepest sympathies to the family of Caleb Jackson, Jr. It is never an easy decision for any police officer to make. We pledge a thorough and objective investigation that will be submitted to the Commonwealth’s Attorney's Office for final review.
This incident began with the serious wounding by gunshot of an employee at the business, who provided ongoing statements to the Department via telephone. There were strong indications that this wounded victim was going into medical distress, and further delays in linking him to emergency medical treatment could have cost him his life. By all indications, the Newport News Police personnel from dispatch to patrol to our Tactical response team acted with professionalism, courage, and putting their safety at risk to save a life. While we must await the outcome of the investigation, the preliminary information we have gives me pride in the work of these men and women.”