A 70-year-old Utah man was charged with murder in the New Year’s Eve shooting of an Oceanair Elementary School teacher.
The suspect, Edward A. Shaw, of Sevier, is a professional engineer and land surveyor, according to Utah state records.
Shaw is charged with second-degree murder in the death of 50-year-old Caroline M. Hendrix, a pre-K teacher who has been with Norfolk Public Schools for 25 years, Norfolk police said in a news release.
After Shaw shot her, an acquaintance of Hendrix’s then opened fire on Shaw, hitting him several times, police said.
Around 8 p.m. Saturday, police and paramedics went to the 300 block of Virginian Drive, responding to a call about a woman who had been shot, police said.
They found Hendrix sitting in her vehicle, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Paramedics took her to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where she died.
The acquaintance who came to her defense was also at the scene, unhurt.
About an hour after the shooting, Chesapeake police found Shaw in a white 2008 Toyota Yaris parked in the 600 block of Happy Acres Road, Virginia State Police Senior Special Agent Aaron Warren said in court documents.
He had been shot several times, Warren said. Shaw told police he’d been shot by a stranger while he was stopped on the shoulder of Interstate 64, near the Deep Creek exit, Warren said.
He portrayed the shooting as a road rage incident.
Shaw told police he took off his shirt when he was shot and put on a coat, Warren said. Police found a light blue, long-sleeved shirt on the front passenger-side floor that had blood and holes in it.
They also found five unfired .38-caliber bullets between the car’s front seats along with a rifle bullet of an unknown caliber, Warren said.
State Police investigated Shaw’s road rage claim but found no evidence to support it, spokeswoman Sgt. Michelle Anaya said in a news release.
Shaw was taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where doctors expect him to live. When he is released, he will be taken to the Norfolk jail and held without bond.
After learning Shaw might be connected to the shooting on Virginian Drive, State Police contacted Norfolk police and the two agencies investigated.
Eric McPhee lives next door to where the shooting happened. He said he was at home New Year’s Eve when he heard two popping noises that he at first chalked up to kids setting off firecrackers on the holiday.
A barrage of gunfire erupted about 45 second later, McPhee said, although he couldn’t say how many shots were fired.
The next thing McPhee knew, police cars and ambulances were swarming the place.
The man who owns the house where the shooting happened is an overseas contractor and has been out of the country since before Christmas, McPhee said. Hendrix, who owned a condo in the 8500 block of Tidewater Drive, and the acquaintance were house-sitting for him, something they had done before when he was working abroad.
After looking at Shaw’s photo on Wednesday, McPhee said he’d never seen him before.
Noelle Gabriel, vice chair of the Norfolk School Board, described Hendrix as “a one-in-a-million teacher” who forged bonds with her students. She sang and danced in the classroom because it helped her students learn. In her off time, she applied for grants and went to education conferences.
“She was so dedicated to her kids,” Gabriel said.