I-64 Sniper Shootings Terrorize Virginia

A sniper has managed to shut down a major Interstate and a county school system, terrorizing the Commonwealth of Virginia. (Or, actually, not. I managed to make it all the way to work and then some before reading about it from Glenn Reynolds, who lives the next state over.)

I-64 Sniper Shootings Terrorize Virginia State Police are looking for more than one person for firing shots that wounded two people and hit at least four vehicles on Interstate 64 near Afton Mountain this morning.

State Police Superintendent Steve Flaherty said witness reports suggest there was more than one suspect in the shootings, which caused police to shut down I-64 for more than six hours today and close all schools in Albemarle County for safety reasons.

Flaherty said shots were fired at three places along the interstate — at the Greenwood Station Road/Route 690 overpass, the on-ramp at milepost 114 and at the Crozet exit. At least four vehicles headed westbound were hit — two passenger vehicles, a van and a tractor-trailer. Also, an unccupied VDOT vehicle was shot.

My initial reaction was a snark about how we should pull our forces out of Virginia, since we’re obviously unable to ensure security and keep the insurgents at bay.

My more serious thought, though, was to reflect on General Barry McCafferty’s prediction that, “Terrorists will strike at America during the next President’s first term.” Dave Schuler, Steve Verdon and I discussed that last night on OTB Radio and our consensus was that, if terrorists didn’t strike, it was not because of our tremendous investment in security. Indeed, none of us would want to live in a country that implemented the necessary measures to ensure that a terrorist strike was impossible. Or even that some lunatic couldn’t shoot some cars on I-64. (Although I’m a bit surprised that he got away with it in Virginia, a concealed carry state. Lots of his targets were likely armed.)

FILED UNDER: General, Terrorism, ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Anderson says:

    My initial reaction was a snark about how we should pull our forces out of Virginia, since we’re obviously unable to ensure security and keep the insurgents at bay.

    Perhaps he’s a Confederate insurgent.

  2. James Joyner says:

    Perhaps he’s a Confederate insurgent.

    Wouldn’t surprise me none.

  3. Michael says:

    Although I’m a bit surprised that he got away with it in Virginia, a concealed carry state. Lots of his targets were likely armed.

    Being armed doesn’t do you any good when you don’t know where you should be aiming, or who you should be shooting.

  4. Anon says:

    Although I’m a bit surprised that he got away with it in Virginia, a concealed carry state. Lots of his targets were likely armed.

    But what are they going to do? Wouldn’t they be insane to get out of their vehicles and take on a hidden sniper?

  5. Bithead says:

    Lots of his targets were likely armed

    …but it’s a real B!+(#, targeting while driving 65, in the dark. OTOH, they do it in LA all the time….

    And your first snark is the best of the day so far.

  6. Michael says:

    Isn’t it a bit pre-mature to be calling the shooter a sniper? Nobody was killed though some sustained injury, the vehicles hit include a van, tractor trailer, and an unoccupied vehicle. This sounds more like kids with a hunting rifle than a trained sniper.

  7. Anderson says:

    That is why the Second Amendment should be construed as protecting our right to bear shoulder-firing heat-seeking missiles. Someone get a supplemental brief to Justice Kennedy!

  8. Patrick T. McGuire says:

    Perhaps he’s a Confederate insurgent.

    Naw, had to be a Yankee. If he was a Confederate, he would have hit his targets.

  9. C.Wagener says:

    A few years back a highway sniper was caught. Turns out he owned an auto glass shop and was just trying to drum up business.

    When you do the math on that, taking the probability that the person chooses his shop times his gross margin over the possibility of injury or death of the people in the car, you don’t’ get the impression he put a big value on human life.

  10. bureaubasher says:

    The Military Governor of Virginia announced that State Police plan a surge to deal with the increase in terrorist insurgency along I-64. State police will conduct house-to-house searches and will take into custody any residents suspected of any connection to the sniping, the snipers, anyone connected with the snipers, or anyone who happened to be in the vicinity when the sniping occurred. Suspects will be taken to a high security prison camp in the Blue Ridge Mountains for interrogation, including use of what the Governor described as “extreme rendition.”

    The increased trooper presence and counter-insurgency operations are expected to cost several billion dollars, which will require cuts in state aid to education, infrastructure repairs and state aid supporting local police and fire protection. These are proposed to be funded through a large state bond issue coupled with tax cuts to higher-income Virginians. “We need to do whatever it takes to make the Old Dominion secure so that democracy can take root, said the Governor.”