A Virginia state senator is in hospital after being stabbed “multiple times” in his home, where his son was found dead of a gunshot wound, police say. Senator Creigh Deeds, a former candidate for governor, is in a critical condition from stab wounds to his head and torso, said police. The other person found in the property was Mr. Deeds’ son, Gus, 24, who died at the scene from a gunshot wound.
Police said they were not looking for any suspects. Investigators did not say if the son’s gunshot wound was self-inflicted.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch newspaper reported that Gus Deeds underwent a mental-health evaluation at a hospital on Monday, but was released due to a lack of psychiatric beds in the area. In a noon press conference on Tuesday, Virginia state police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said they had responded to an emergency call at 07:25 (12:25 GMT).
Mr. Deeds, 55, was flown to the University of Virginia Hospital in Charlottesville. Ms Geller said that he had “been able to talk with investigators and our troopers” about the incident, despite his injuries.
The state senator, a Democrat elected in 2001, represents Bath County in the western part of the state. He ran unsuccessfully in 2009 against current Republican Governor Bob McDonnell. Four years earlier he was bested by Mr. McDonnell in a tight race for state attorney general. Shortly after the gubernatorial campaign, Mr. Deeds and his wife, Pam, were divorced.
Governor McDonnell said in a statement: “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Deeds family.”
“Creigh Deeds is an exceptional and committed public servant who has always done what he believes is best for Virginia and who gives his all to public service,” he added. Local politician David Toscano told the Washington Times that Tuesday’s incident was “a terrible tragedy”.
“Senator Deeds was very close to his son Gus, and has taken herculean efforts to help him over the years,” said Mr. Toscano.