Teen killed by train in Chesterfield had escaped mental health facility

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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WAVY) — Police identified the person who was hit and killed by a train in Chesterfield as a teenager who escaped from a Newport News mental health facility in March.

Police confirmed that 16-year-old Aaron Groome escaped from the Newport News Behavioral Health Center on March 23 after allegedly attacking and robbing one of the mental health facility’s staff members.

During the attack, Groome allegedly grabbed the staff member from behind the neck and told a 17-year-old boy to take the staff member’s keys and walkie talkie. The teenagers left the facility, but the 17-year-old was stopped by other staff members before escaping, according to police.

Newport News police took out petitions against Groome for charges of strangulation, robbery, and conspiracy to commit robbery. Three weeks before his death, Newport News police told WAVY that they knew of the teenager’s whereabouts, but that he wasn’t yet in their custody.

Newport News police have declined to comment on the circumstances surrounding Groome’s death; however, Chesterfield authorities say they responded to the railroad tracks after receiving reports of a pedestrian struck near the 15900 block of Woods Edge Road around 2:15 p.m. on May 8.

Police said Groome was walking south on the tracks when he was hit by a southbound train.

Chesterfield Police are investigating the incident.

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