No Evidence of Shooter on USS Carter Hall or General Dynamics

The amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD 50) returns to homeport at Naval Station Norfolk, Sep 23, 2017. (U.S. Navy photo/Justin E. Yarborough)
The amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD 50) returns to homeport at Naval Station Norfolk, Sep 23, 2017. (U.S. Navy photo/Justin E. Yarborough)

PORTSMOUTH -- Police and Navy security forces found no evidence of a shooting this afternoon following a sweep of the USS Carter Hall and a barge adjacent to it at General Dynamics in Portsmouth.

Earlier in the day, the ship was placed on lockdown after authorities received a report of an active shooter aboard a barge adjacent to it while it was moored at the shipyard.

Portsmouth police said in a tweet they received a call about a possible shooter about 11:46 a.m.

The Navy said in a statement that the Carter Hall's security forces swept the barge but didn't find any evidence of a shooting or weapons. Portsmouth police also swept the barge and surrounding areas and didn't find any victims, according to the Navy.

"They completed the combined sweep at 4 p.m.," Naval Surface Force Atlantic spokesman Jim DeAngio said. "After the crew was all accounted for and debriefed, they departed for the day."

The Carter Hall went into the shipyard for maintenance in January. The barge next to the ship is used to house sailors and includes office spaces and a galley, DeAngio said.

Tyree Jones, 60, works for Marva Maid, and was making a milk delivery to the Carter Hall around 11:45 a.m. Thursday morning, he said.

He was standing by his trailer talking to a Navy employee when he heard, "There's a shooter on the pier. This is not a drill," over a loud speaker, he said.

"I didn't know what was going on," said Jones.

He said he saw lots of Portsmouth police officers arrive in cruisers. They yelled at him to leave the area, he said.

He also saw Navy personnel with their guns drawn, including handguns and rifles, he said.

He said he had to leave his truck at the pier and had been standing outside the facility.

The Carter Hall is an amphibious dock landing ship whose home port is Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek in Virginia Beach. It has a crew of about 400 and returned from its most recent deployment to Europe and the Middle East in September with the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group.

This article is written by Gordon Rago from The Virginian-Pilot and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

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