Column: Continuing the work of connecting Hampton Roads law enforcement, LGBT communities

BY MICHAEL BERLUCCHI Departments in all seven major Hampton Roads cities have now appointed liaison officers to serve as a bridge between police and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, or LGBT, people. The latest to step into this role is… Continue Reading


Bogus Benjamins: Fake money meant for films can be bought online — and some try to pass it off as the real deal

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE — Our scene opens on a January day in the 5800 block of Newtown Arch in Virginia Beach. A small exchange is about to be made. A woman expects a buyer to show up for her iPhone. Arrangements… Continue Reading


Rotary Club of Cape Henry recognizes Virginia Beach police fatal crash team officer, volunteer rescue leader

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE VIRGINIA BEACH – The Rotary Club of Cape Henry presented its annual public safety awards to Master Police Officer Terry Schultz, who exhibited both kindness and smarts in his work investigating serious traffic crashes, and volunteer Emergency Medical… Continue Reading


Man dies after possible drowning reported near Dam Neck Road in Virginia Beach

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS PINE MEADOWS — A man died after a possible drowning was reported in the Pine Meadows neighborhood on Friday, March 24, according to a city police spokesperson. The man was identified on Saturday as Franklin “Dell”  Lemonds, 70, of Virginia… Continue Reading


Police Chief: Virginia Beach crime rate as low as it’s been in decades

Ed. note — This story originally appeared in the Friday, Feb. 3, print edition. THE INDEPENDENT NEWS VIRGINIA BEACH – While noting areas of concern, police Chief Jim Cervera in a January report to the City Council described a department that is… Continue Reading


Recruiting expo draws people in search to fill Virginia Beach Police Department’s ranks

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE VIRGINIA BEACH — During a recent expo at the Law Enforcement Training Academy, Officer S.D. Simmons III from the city’s Third Precinct stood in a hallway to tell 23-year-old Ashley Newcomer of Ocean Lakes what it’s like doing… Continue Reading


Wave of thefts from and of cars in Red Mill, Strawbridge in Virginia Beach

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS COURTHOUSE – Police on Thursday took reports for five stolen cars and 23 larcenies from automobiles — all from the Red Mill and Strawbridge areas of the city. The rash of crimes comes after a great deal… Continue Reading


Virginia Beach police officer arrested, charged with embezzlement

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS COURTHOUSE — A veteran Virginia Beach police officer is accused of embezzlement after he was found in possession of unclaimed property that was supposed to be destroyed, according to the police department. Master Police Officer Mark W. Rowe,… Continue Reading


Strawberry Festival officials, city police do outreach on traffic, parking issues; no deal with Back Bay Farms

  BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE – Pungo Strawberry Festival officials and city police have done outreach on the parking and traffic game plan for the annual Memorial Day weekend event, which brings thousands of people to Pungo on roads that… Continue Reading


Beach agencies unite to save man from mud under challenging circumstances

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE – Rescue officials helped Terry Huss, 63, of Holland Pines ashore at the Dozier Bridge ramp near the 2500 block of Princess Anne Road on Saturday, March 26, after the man spend hours trapped after chasing… Continue Reading