Police identify victims after double homicide in Danville

Homicide investigation underway after two people found dead in Danville

DANVILLE – Thursday night's double homicide ended at the intersection of Arnett Boulevard and Glendale Avenue.

That's where the car 21-year-old Breia Edmunds and 20-year-old Damarcus Whirtehead were found in came to rest up against the curb.

On Friday afternoon, the police department was still investigating exactly what happened, but Police Chief Phillip Broadfoot said the shots are believed to have been fired in the vicinity of the intersection.

Bystanders couldn't contain their emotions Friday morning as they watched police investigate the sedan, found just before midnight, in which Edmunds and Whitehead were found after officers responded for a report of a car crash.

"It happened there at that location. We're fairly certain of that," Broadfoot explained.

This comes less than two days after 23-year-old Fenqwon Payne was found shot to death in a home on Bradley Road.

"We cannot keep having our young people die," said Broadfoot. "With everyone working together we can make this stop."

The city has now had seven homicides this year, two more than this time last year.

But, Broadfoot doesn't believe that means the city is on pace to break last year's record of 16 homicides.

"I don't know if we're on pace to break that, but it is concerning when we have any homicide," said Broadfoot. "I have full confidence that the community will recognize what they need to do."

Pastors who stopped by the scene Friday morning to try to console bystanders believe poverty is one of the main factors causing a lot of the anger that they believe is driving these shootings and that is what they say needs to be addressed by the entire city.

"Until we address those conditions, we will see this continue," Rev. Avon Keen emphasized.

Pastor Cecil Bridgeforth believes young people not valuing life is another issue contributing to the violence.

"I would encourage any parent to embrace their children and give them a sense of what life is and how much life has to offer them," Bridgeforth said.

It was unclear Friday if Wednesday's homicide and Thursday's double homicide were connected, but police were investigating the possibility.

At the scene, Virginia State Police and the Pittsylvania County Sheriff's Office assisted the police department at the department's request.

"When you're working three homicides in the course of two days, it maxes out our resources," said Broadfoot.

State police were already on patrol in the city due to a previous request from the department for help patrolling during peak crime hours.

Police say this is still an active investigation and ask anyone with information is to contact Danville Crime Stoppers at (434) 799-6508, or via our crime tips line at crimetips@danvilleva.gov. 

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