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Newly released dash cam video shows the moment in which a Virginia police officer shot at a suspect who pointed a gun at him after a high-speed chase.
"Put your hands outside the car," Officer Greg Thinnes of the Colonial Heights Police Department called to the female suspect during the Aug. 24 incident.
The suspect, 44-year-old Melissa Alexander, does not put her hands outside of the car, but instead gets out of the car and points a gun at Thinnes, the dash cam video shows.
The video was released this week after Alexander was found not guilty by reason of insanity on charges that included attempted murder of a police officer.
The altercation followed a high-speed chase, which was the result of an attempted stop for a "traffic infraction," according to a statement that the Colonial Heights Police Department released at the time. Thinnes fired his weapon six times, according to the video, and hit Alexander in the stomach twice, according to NBC affiliate WWBT.
"Why did you pull a gun on me? Do you want to hurt yourself? Are you trying to hurt yourself?" Thinnes can be heard saying to the suspect in the video, after he fired the shots.
After an investigation by the Virginia State Police, Colonial Heights Commonwealth's Attorney William Bray determined that Thinnes' use of force was justified. "After evaluating all the evidence, I determined that Officer Thinnes reacted lawfully and according to his training," Bray said in a statement.
— Elisha Fieldstadt