Official: 1 hurt in stabbing at Virginia Navy site

Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth Virginia
Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth Virginia


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (AP) - The Navy conducted a massive manhunt Friday for a sailor that officials said stabbed another service member near one of its naval hospitals.

The Navy said the stabbing occurred in the morning outside the Navy Exchange at Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads, Portsmouth Annex, during an argument between two sailors. The installation is home to Naval Medical Center Portsmouth and sits near a residential area on the Elizabeth River, where thousands of people had gathered across the river in downtown Norfolk to watch a parade of ships as part of the annual Harborfest festival.

The Navy identified the suspect as Petty Officer 3rd Class Wilbur Harwell. Security forces were going door to door at the locked-down facility in search of the man, who was wearing civilian clothes. The Navy said the person who was stabbed was also a sailor and was taken to the naval hospital with critical injuries.

Capt. Michael "Jake" Johansson, commanding officer of Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads, said the two men knew each other, although he wasn't sure exactly what their relationship was before the altercation.

The victim hasn't been identified.

Traffic onto the base was still not permitted early Friday afternoon, although the Navy is letting those who were in the vehicles at the time the installation went on lockdown to exit after being searched. The Navy says it's turning away people with routine medical visits or other business.

The manhunt comes a day after Naval Medical Center Portsmouth practiced an active shooter drill as part of routine training.


Associated Press writer Steve Sszkotak contributed to this report from Richmond.