Saturday, May 28, 2011

Tyler Lynn-Gainous Shot

As you may have read or seen by now, Tyler Lynn-Gainous was shot on Weaver Drive late Friday afternoon and killed.

I haven't been one for blogging crime stories. (Then, I haven't seen a blog that regularly does.) However, this shooting is quite different for me. The victim died about 35 yards from my apartment's front door. One of my neighbors was taken into custody by the Virginia Beach Police Department (VBPD) as a "person of interest" for questioning. Therefore, I won't take the usual approach to such an event, but want to look at how such a tragedy impacts a neighborhood. With (hopefully) a murder trial in the months to come, this may become a series.

WEAVER DRIVE

My home neighborhood for over 8 years now. Weaver is a cul de sac with two apartment complexes on it. Aden Park Apartments is the front of the two, providing about 10% of the units in its price range in Virginia Beach. Behind it is Ebbets Plaza, one of the few directly-subsidized apartment complexes in town. The neighborhood is poor, and about 90% minority. (I'm used to being the only White at a social gathering.)

The neighborhood was troubled in the 90s, but brought back through a concerted effort. VBPD came in and did community policing. (Among those who served here was current VBPD Deputy Chief John Bell.) A new company acquired Aden Park and upgraded it. The Community Manager chosen has been excellent: a firm but fair lady who will refuse to renew leases, and even evict, on those who are problem residents.

However, I've seen symptoms of backsliding over the past 10 months and have spoken to a couple of people about it. If there's a silver lining to this tragedy, maybe it will be the alarm that triggers a comprehensive process for improving our neighborhood.

For the purpose of the shooting, let me set the geography. Tyler Lynn-Gainous lived on Williams Court, the first cluster of apartments on the left side of Weaver Drive as you come in. The person of interest lived on Jasper Court, the first cluster of apartments on the right side of Weaver as you come in. The shooting was on Weaver, with the victim dying on the sidewalk on the Williams side of Weaver.

FRIDAY NIGHT

I worked Friday afternoon. With HRT's Route 20 messed up at rush hour, it was about 6:30 before I reached my home neighborhood. As I approached, I could see VBPD had Weaver blocked off. At first I thought we'd had a traffic accident, but then noticed how large an area was cordoned off with yellow crime scene tape. Something serious had happened. I told the cop at the entrance of Weaver that I was a resident, and he told me to walk through via the fields to the north. I had already figured that was probably the only way in, but had never walked it as long as I've lived here.

Entering Jasper, the crime scene tape came to within yards of my door. A black screen concealed the body on the sidewalk on the far side of Weaver. Small groups of residents stood along the edge of the crime scene trying to see what was going on in our neighborhood.

After dinner and a short Internet session, I came back outside. Some were still watching. I grabbed my favorite lawn chair and took a seat. The body was removed in a body bag about 8:30. Policewomen were combing the grass for evidence, and photos were being taken. VBPD pulled out shortly after 9 P.M.

Once the tape came down, I wanted to go look at where my neighbor had died. Before I could get out of my lawn chair, two women were already there. I went over and said a prayer. Despite the area being sprayed to clear blood at the end of the investigation, I could see it in a couple places. Within minutes, neighbors began erecting a makeshift memorial at the site of the death.

SATURDAY

I noticed on Saturday morning that the memorial was growing. Already having planned a shopping run for Saturday earlier in the week, I bought a candle for the memorial while I was out. Shortly after getting home, I took it across the street. I blessed it in the manner of a priest, lit it, and placed it among the others.

Today was eerily quiet in our neighborhood, especially for a Saturday. I neither saw nor heard any children outside playing, despite the great weather. Parents may have been keeping them inside.

I've been checking the Internet throughout the day for updates on the case, but haven't seen anything yet.

I thought I should go relight all the candles at dusk. Taking out garbage in the early evening, I noticed someone else already had. They look beautiful in the dark tonight.

34 comments:

Avenging Archangel said...

I had planned to blog the TDCHR meeting on Friday night, but obviously bigger things happened in my neighborhood. You should now understand the delay until Saturday morning in getting the post up.

Anonymous said...

many thanks for your prayers and interest in Tyler's tragic demise, it's my hope that this platform will serve as a vehicle to stem the spike in violence in your community... It's disheartening to witness yet another young person not attain his full potential...it's so close and beyond words.

Anonymous said...

Tyler Gainous was my best friend.. Its amazing that your guys didnt kno him for long but he touched you like he did all his family and friends here in Newark,NJ.. He was an amazing man.. Had a smile that can light up a room.. It kills me that he moved down there to get away from the violence here just to be killed down there.. His killer iz a coward and should get what ever iz comin to him.. Tyler didnt deserve to be shot dead in the streets like dog... He had so much to do.. so much life to live...

Tah

Anonymous said...

Hi Anonymous, I'm a reporter with The Virginian-Pilot, and am working on a follow-up story about Tyler's death. Would you be willing to do an interview with me? If yes, please call me at (757) 418-4071. My deadline is 5:30 p.m. Thank you, and I'm very sorry for the loss of your friend. -Kathy Adams

INDIA said...

tyler lynn was my lil cousin/brother he grew up in the same house as me and my sisters and brothers my heart is broken i really feel sick to my stomach when i look at his killer face.... i lovr you tyler until next time...love you big sister INDIA

Anonymous said...

Hi kathy i just saw your comment.. thank you for your kind words.. if you still would like to do a story on tyler i dont mind i would like to get permission from his mom first..

BLM said...

I must admit that I was not quite sure of what an archangel was but you inspired me took research it's meaning. Let me say that right now you have been truly an angel in disguise. Thank you sir for all that you do. You have touched our family deeply during our time of distress.

Anonymous said...

It's painfully real that nothing and no one can bring him back. We are sad and our hearts are BROKEN. Tyler is loved. Thx for your blog.
PA, Family

Anonymous said...

Thank you all for your very kind words for my son.Tyler,was not only my son,but my best friend as well.I'm sorry that I couldn't have been there to protect from such a coward.Thank you all for your blessings once again&son R.I.P.1LOVE-Dad!!!

Anonymous said...

My sincere apologies to the family for your loss. At the same time I pray that you find forgiveness in your hearts for the person who committed this crime against your loved one.

pcs said...

REALLY??? Look to the sky, The Most High (God) will have the ultimate say.

Anonymous said...

forgiveness , u cant possibly be serious.ask his parents about forgiveness when they both have only memories of a life that was tragically taken way too soon...ask our family who he lived with how forgivenesscan console them and their children who now have no understanding of how come their cousin is not coming back....

neesh said...

Tyler is my heart. this has been the hardest thing 4 me to get pass. forgiveness is sumthing his killer dont deserve. Tyler is a uniqe special person, someone I love very much in havn't spoken to n a month over carelessness. My dude will get justice. He is well loved.

pcs said...

Neesh, we all loved Tyler very much and while you are entitled to your feelings, PLEASE REFRAIN FROM FOUL LANGUAGE. God will handle this...as some of your comments may be disturbing to my family members who happen upon this blog.

Respectfully,
Peyton

neesh said...

as for this blog about tyler, my words are not foul. This is how i feel.No disrespect to anyone. i feel disrespected.

Anonymous said...

I was seeing Tyler here in VA beach. Not his girlfriend but we shared a closeness. I had spoken to him two nights before. I can't even begin to express how my heart ached to know he was gone. To know ill never see him again. The regret I feel that the night we spoke he asked to see me and I said ill get by later....and later never came. Ill miss u my friend. Kisses sent to heaven for u. Rest easy baby.

Anonymous said...

It's said that Tyler was shot and killed over words of disrespect..My thoughts on that are: Couldn't you come up with something better than that? Those of us who knew Tyler if only in passing knew that Tyler was not a disrespectful person.What? Were ya bored that day and thought it just might be interesting to take someones life? May God have mercy on you..As far as myself... I only hope you wake up every night with the images of what you did going through your mind....

Anonymous said...

It was said that Tyler was shot and killed over disrespectful words... My thoughts on that are: Couldn't you come up with anything better than that? Anyone who knew Tyler if only in passing knew for a fact that Tyler was not a disrespectful person... What was it? were you bored that day and thought it might be fun to take someones life? May GOD HAVE MERCY ON YOU!!! My greatest wish for you though is that you never have one day of Peace... That every time you close your eyes, you will see Tylers face...

mandy said...

I was unaware of this blog and was also a good friend of Ty. I had just seen him the night before he had just went to the store and was about to chill wit his boys.. I will never forget how he touched me and how nice he was to me and my son.. I couldnt believe it when I was told he was killed. Taken away in a blink of an eye. I believe he will get justice in his name. We mostly spoke about family he told me his mom was his heart and missed her all the time.. It is just a crying shame he moved here to do better with his life and he was robbed of it.. I still glance at my phone from time to time and see his number I want to delete it but cant.. You will always be loved and missed rest in peace!!!!!!

pcs said...

Anon June 14, 2011 10:38p Both families are victims,Time heals all wounds, What goes around, comes around, et al...so many adages apply. Lately though I have desperately pondered "forgiveness" and to be totally frank, in this moment I'm okay with it because Mike has has been stopped or should I say that is my hope. It is my belief that there have been others and nothing can dissuade me otherwise.

Anonymous said...

As far as all of the people who have shared their kind thoughts about tyler .. Our family really appreciates the kind words and warm thoughts of memories that all people who have said the nice things said about tyler.. but i think for all of those people who are pushing forgiveness this is a way to new and open wound to soon to be forgiven (A)& (B ) PCS as in conversations that we have had this guy has finally been caught for this action and it will shut him down from future situations and hopefully catch him from past same nature situations.. bottomline is this there is no way in the world that anybody can tell me that this was his first time , it is the first time he got caught!!!And again at the end of the day I have to ask what advice do these people suggesting forgiveness have to offer his parents for comfort?? Where does forgiveness come in with such a cold premeditated MURDER...It is what it is and this is MURDER hopefully justice will do what its job description says and prevail..

Anonymous said...

See you at the crossroads, so you won't be lonely...so be lonely.

Anonymous said...

See you at the crossroads so you won't be lonely...so you won't be lonely.

Neesh said...

Miss u Tyler. To the maxx.Still goin thru it. Visit this blog alot.

Anonymous said...

"Crime itself is a form of oppression and African Americans fall victim to more violent crime than any other race in America" - The Great Debaters

Anonymous said...

They say a heap see, but few know. In this instance a heap see and a heap know. So as the background details to this story unfold, it will be interesting to see who has the courage and moral strength to do what is RIGHT.

Anonymous said...

How do we change the mindset of a certain segment of our community, those that are inflicted with an abundance of so much self-hatred that they seek to annihilate, their brethren,eat our young, destroying community?

It so "takes a villiage" and we must do better!

Anonymous said...

How do we change the mindset of a certain segment of our community, those that are inflicted with an abundance of so much self-hatred that they seek to annihilate, their brethren,eat our young, destroying community?

It so "takes a villiage" and we must do better!

pcs said...

So for some odd reason today is like no other,for it is far worst than those first harrowing moments of recieving the news of Tyler's murder.

Revisiting online news coverage of this crime, I tried hard but could not interpret Mike's demeanor and facial expressions as that of sorrow or remorse as was written by one reporter. No need for circumlocution, Tyler is DEAD. What I could see was an individual who's back was against the wall because, damn - he got caught. He had a plan,days in between to cool off,reconsider yet and still, he executed in more ways that one.

The RAGE I'm feeling out-weighs the sorrow,shock and pain. Please let there be no further delay,let justice be swift with the maxium penalty.

neesh said...

Missing My Dude...

BriChe said...

Tyler was my big brother. He meant the world to me. I miss him soo much and can't believe he's gone. I will love and miss him forever <3 Rest In Peace Ty, I Love you.
- Bri

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday 2 you in your transcendental space, we all miss & love you dearly.

Anonymous said...

love always, rest easy. still in our hearts

Unknown said...

To my son: A day never goes by that you are not in my thoughts and prayers. I love and miss you so much. I hope you are with your brother.