SPOTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Va. - A Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Deputy has been indicted on a felony charge in connection with the shooting of an unarmed man on a dark, rural road in April.
A special grand jury indicted David Turbyfill for reckless handling of a firearm resulting in serious injury for the shooting of Isiah Brown on Catharpin Road early in the morning on April 21.
Turbyfill could face up to five years in prison.
Brown, 32, was hospitalized after his attorney says he was shot eight times. He was released nearly one month later.
Audio recordings indicate the deputies who responded to Brown’s home mistook a cordless home phone Brown was holding for a gun.
David Haynes, Brown’s attorney, said Thursday that Brown and his family were surprised and appreciative of the indictment, but they also had hope for stronger charges against the deputy.
He said Brown’s recovery has been nothing short of miraculous, even though Brown will never be the same.
"He does have six bullets that remain in his body, some actually in bone," said Haynes. "One in the leg, one in the pelvis. He has serious internal injuries as well, but he’s a fighter. And Isiah has dedicated himself to getting as close to normal as he was before."
Virginia State Police have been investigating the incident.
According to state police and the sheriff’s office, Brown called 911 at around 3 a.m. April 21 to report a domestic dispute with his brother.
The 911 audio call has been released. In it, Brown asks his brother for his gun and tells the call taker he’s going to kill his brother.
When the call taker asks if he has a gun, he initially responds in the affirmative, but later repeatedly says he does not have a weapon.
A deputy arrives within minutes and finds Brown walking outside, still on the phone with 911.
The call taker tells Brown to put his hands up and then the deputy commands Brown to do the same. A second deputy states that Brown has a gun to his own head.
Multiple shots are fired at Brown and then the deputies immediately render aid.
In the body camera footage released by the sheriff’s office, you can’t see Brown or the shooting.
Haynes says Brown has told him he did have his hands up. Haynes believes there may be additional video of the incident that shows the shooting.
Before Brown called 911, a deputy had given him a ride home after his car broke down. Initially, it was reported that was the same deputy who shot Brown. Haynes says while he believes that the deputy was on scene at the time of the shooting, it’s unclear if he was the deputy who fired shots.
Brown’s attorneys are demanding that Turbyfill be fired. Turbyfill remains employed by the sheriff’s office, but on administrative duties.
Online court records do not list an attorney for Turbyfill. Attempts to reach him were unsuccessful Thursday evening.
The Spotsylvania County sheriff’s office released a statement Thursday saying:
The Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office is directing all media outlet inquiries about today’s indictment for the Sheriff’s Office employee to the Special Prosecutors office to handle the officer-involved shooting that occurred on April 21, 2021. The Deputy has been placed on administrative duties since the incident which is standard practice for this type of matter.