New information released in Danville officer-involved shooting, faith community reacts

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DANVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) We have learned several pieces of new information on the officer-involved shooting that happened early Sunday morning in Danville.

The Medical Examiner has confirmed that Juan Jones died from a gunshot wound to the chest.

The Police Department has also released the names of the officers who fired their weapons.

Danville police say Officer Christopher Simpkins and Officer David Branch were the officers placed on administrative reassignment following Sunday's incident. They will remain in that capacity during the Virginia State Police investigation.

On Tuesday, Danville Police Chief Scott Booth decided to release the body camera video of the shooting to the media. He says he wants to be as transparent as possible and dispel any rumors that may be circulating.

"We selected this because it depicts an accurate depiction, as we see it, of what those officers faced in the early morning hours responding to this incident," says Danville Police Chief, Scott Booth.

Booth showed the video to Jones' family as well as many community leaders, including Southern Christian Leadership Conference President, Reverend William Avon Keen, on Monday.

"A lot of times you don't get the opportunity to see what the police department has, so that was one thing we were really thankful of," says Keen.

Reverend Keen says he is glad Chief Booth showed them the video, because it cleared up a lot of the rumors going around.

"There were some things that we saw in the video that let us know they did make an effort to try to get him to get out of the vehicle, and it was not a small effort," he says.

Since the incident Sunday morning, there have been several protests. Reverend Keen says the response, so far, has been peaceful and productive.

"Good communication from the police department and we've seen the young people are saying that, we are concerned about a life. One life lost is too much. You see that it's touching the young people, and touching this community," he says.

This investigation is still ongoing right now by Virginia State Police.
VSP says that no gun was recovered from the scene after Jones was shot.