RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The suspect in a July officer-involved shooting in Manchester appeared virtually before a judge in Richmond Circuit Court on Monday. He is facing several felony charges.
Dakari Reinhardt, 20, was arraigned on Aug. 15, via video call from his hospital bed at VCU Medical Center. During the court appearance, the presiding judge asked Reinhardt how long he would be in the hospital. Although the suspect did not answer the question directly, he noted that he was set for another surgery a few hours after the arraignment, which would likely delay his discharge.
The court appearance served as the formal notification for Reinhardt of the charges brought against him in connection with the July 25 shooting, which also sent a Richmond Police officer to the hospital. Reinhardt is facing the following felony charges:
- Aggravated malicious wounding, Class 2
- Use of a firearm in commission of a felony, unclassified
- Possession with intent to distribute schedule I/II, unclassified
- Firearm display with selling scheduled I/II, Class 6
- Hit and run with damage, Class 5
Reinhardt indicated that he intended to hire his own attorney because he had previously done so on other, unrelated charges. However, at the recommendation of the court, he was assigned a public defender, who was already present and had instructed him not to speak about the case to anyone. The judge noted that Reinhardt could retain his own counsel at any point to replace the public defender.
8News also obtained court documents that revealed new details about the shooting.
According to an affidavit from detective Sergeant George Wade with the Richmond Police Department (RPD), authorities initially observed Reinhardt speeding and driving recklessly down Oliver Hill Way in the early morning hours of July 25, before entering Interstate 95, heading south.
“Police continued to follow Reinhardt, who exited the highway and then crashed the car he was driving into a tree along Commerce Road,” Wade wrote. “The car was estimated to have sustained more than $1,000 in damage.”
Consistent with the information previously released by RPD, the affidavit went on to describe how Reinhardt reportedly ran from the crashed vehicle toward a nearby housing complex, where he exchanged gunfire with one of the officers on scene.
“Reinhardt shot at the victim repeatedly, ultimately striking the victim once. The victim returned fire in an attempt to disable Reinhardt,” Wade wrote. “The bullet grazed and splintered the victim’s hip bone, with bone fragments still lodged within his body, and the victim now utilizes a cane to walk.”
During a press conference held the same day as the shooting, RPD Chief Gerald Smith noted that both the suspect and the officer were hospitalized, but only the suspect had life-threatening injuries after being hit in the upper torso.
8News reached out to RPD on Monday for an update on the officer’s condition, but a spokesperson stated, “The status of the officer’s health is a confidential personnel matter.”
However, the public court documents also revealed the name of the officer who was involved in the shooting. According to Wade’s statement, it was Timothy R. Burgess who was hit by Reinhardt’s gunfire. Burgess was previously named Rookie of the Year by RPD in 2016.
“Another officer on scene saw Reinhardt toss a pack from his person onto a nearby porch,” Wade wrote. “The bag contained a digital scale and a rock of suspected crack cocaine weighing about seven grams. Police also found more than $1,000 in cash on Reinhardt upon his arrest. A narcotics distribution expert would testify that cocaine of that weight, paired with such a large amount of cash and a digital scale, would be inconsistent with person use.”
As Smith noted back on July 25, the affidavit also stated that police recovered a handgun at the scene.
Reinhardt, still in the hospital, is due back in court on Sept. 6 for the charges related to this officer-involved shooting.