Tonight was the second time in nearly a month that Mosby Court residents gathered to mourn a victim of homicide.
The shooting of William E. Crutchfield on Oct. 4 brings the number of murders in Richmond to 28 this year. The total number of people slain in the city last year was 47.
Dozens who attended a vigil honoring Crutchfield raised extinguished candles into the air. As the smoke rose, they chanted, “we’ll miss you Deuces.”
Police found the 34-year-old suffering from a gunshot wound when they responded to the 1900 block of Redd Street at around 2:20 a.m. He died at the scene.
His death comes after the fatal shootings of Jawaun L. Hargrove, 33, and Anthony D. Addison, 21, on Sept. 9. Their vigil was held that Friday.
Crutchfield’s death brings the number of shootings in Mosby to six this year, which is a stark change from 2014. Captain Roger Russell of the Richmond Police Department told attendees that there were no murders in Mosby last year. (Russell later clarified that there was one homicide in Mosby last year, Zyemontae Redd, 15, was shot on Oct. 26.)
Crutchfield’s mother, Darlene Crutchfield, known affectionately as “Mom Deuces”, said that no one had the right to kill her son.
“I don’t know how this happened to my son," she said. "If he had something, it was yours."
Crutchfield’s vigil was just as somber as that of Addison’s and Hargrove’s but there was a noticeable difference. The previous ceremony received heavy media coverage and was attended by city officials, Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham and Delegate Delores McQuinn.
Community activist J.J. Minor, who was an organizer for both vigils, said that the lack of media presence was noted by Mosby residents.
“To me, it sends a message that the news media is so used to this happening ... and don’t want to come out here,” Minor said after the vigil.
Russell also had concerns about the level of attention the event received.
“We don’t ever want anyone to think it’s not newsworthy,” he said.
Richmond Police Major Sydney Collier asked Mosby residents to work with police to end the bloodshed.
“We can guide you to some of those resources to help,” he said. “But you have to be willing to listen and ask for help.”