From WVEC of July 16, 2009
No charges against Suffolk store owner who shot suspect
No charges will be filed against a man who shot and killed a would-be robber in his store, the Suffolk commonwealth's attorney announced Thursday.
On the morning on June 21, the alarm went off at James Durden’s Whaleyville store – J&L Food Mart.
Durden, who lives close by, grabbed a gun and went to the store. His brother told 13News that Durden opened fire because he thought the man pointed a gun at him.
That man, identified as Ernest Scott Roop, was struck four times.
Detectives determined Roop was wearing camouflage clothing with his face concealed in a "ninjna" style fashion. They also said Roop had a hunting knife and crowbar and was wearing heavy construction gloves.
In the letter to Police Chief Thomas Bennett, C. Phillip Ferguson stated, “Mr. Durden was confronted with a very dangerous situation created by Roop and was legally justified in using deadly force as he genuinely believed that Roop had a firearm and that his own life was in danger.
In addition, from a practical standpoint, convinced that a Suffolk jury would not convict Mr. Durden of criminal misconduct under the facts of this case.
Therefore, this Office declines to prosecute any charges against Mr. Durden.”