A man suspected of stabbing someone in front of the Navy Exchange store in Portsmouth, Va. has caused the Naval Medical center to remain on lockdown. The stabbing suspect fled the scene but is believed to still be on base, Portsmouth Police Detective Misty Holley said. She said that a SWAT team is on the scene with uniformed officers, K-9 units and detectives searching for the attacker.
The Hampton Roads Naval Support Activity Facebook page said that the stabbing took place Friday at about 8:30 a.m. The victim was a service member and was transported to the medical center with critical injuries per the Washington Post.
Base officials wrote, “BASE ON LOCKDOWN: An incident has occurred on base that has caused security forces to close the gates. All staff and patients are to shelter in place. Monitor this page for further updates.”
“An incident has occurred on base that has caused security forces to close the gates. All staff and patients are to shelter in place. Monitor this page for further updates,” read another message on the Facebook page.
The assailant was described as a white man who weighs about 165 pounds, has blond hair and blue eyes and was last seen wearing tan cargo pants and a white shirt. Officials told Norfolk ABC affiliate WAVY they knew the man’s name and had a picture of him.
Despite rumors swirling around social media that there was also a shooting on the base, Navy spokesperson Jim Moir said there were no indication of gunshots that had been fired or a shooter on the base.
About 4,300 military and civilian personnel work at the medical center, which sits across the Elizabeth River from Norfolk.
It is the oldest continuously operated hospital in the Navy, according to its website. It serves about 420,00 military members, families and retirees in the Hampton Roads region, home to one of the largest concentrations of military power in the world.
Va. Stabbing Suspect Remains at Large, Leaves Naval Hospital On Lockdown