VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Four were engineers who worked to maintain streets and protect wetlands. Three were right-of-way agents who reviewed property lines. The others included an account clerk, a technician, an administrative assistant and a special projects coordinator. In all, they had served the city of Virginia Beach for more than 150 years.
These 11 city employees and one contractor were wiped out Friday when a fellow city worker opened fire inside a municipal building. A day after the shooting, city officials sought to honor them by sharing their job titles and years of service in a
“They leave a void that we will never be able to fill,” said City Manager Dave Hansen, who had worked for years with many
of the dead.
Police Chief James Cervera identified the assailant as DeWayne Craddock, who had been employed for 15 years as an engineer with the city’s utilities department.He declined to comment on a motive for the rampage, which ended with Craddock’s death in a gun battle with officers. City officials uttered his name just once and said they would not mention it again.
Joseph Scott, an engineering technician with the utilities department, said he had worked with Craddock and had a brief interaction with him Friday, passing him in the men’s restroom about five minutes before
“He was in there brushing his teeth, which he always did after he ate,” Scott said. “I said ‘Hey, how you doing? What are you doing this weekend?’ It was just a brief conversation.”
Scott said he left for the day right after and learned of the shooting when a co-worker and then his son called him asking if he
“I couldn’t believe that it happened,” he said.
One of the dead employees had worked for the city for 41 years.
Six worked in the same department as Craddock, though authorities have declined to say if anyone was specifically targeted or if the suspect had issued threats before. The victims were found throughout the building, on three floors, police said.
The municipal building was open to the public, but security passes were required to enter inner offices, conference rooms and other work areas.