Family: Woman Shot by Police Officer Was 83 Years Old

Update 5:35 p.m.:

Altavista, VA - We have the very latest information on the shooting by an Altavista Police Officer that left an elderly woman dead.
The officer shot and killed Delma Towler, 83, Wednesday around 10 p.m. Virginia State Police are investigating.
Right now, state police are saying the officers saw a woman with a weapon, told her repeatedly to put it down, and she refused. They say she even pointed the gun in their direction, so they fired.
Friends and family say Delma Towler was a good woman. She went to church and read the bible. They could have never predicted her life would end as it did.
Delma Towler is eulogized by one friend as helpful, a "give you the shirt off her back" type. In front of her sister's porch is where Toller's life-ended, her sister's front yard. Now, dirt covers the blood stains.
Nancye G. Miller is a dear friend.
"She was a good friend, a good neighbor. And, I was so sad to hear about it," said Miller.
According to family, the events leading to Towler's death started at her house. Thinking a person was breaking into her home, Towler grabbed her gun for protection, then called 911.
Family says she fired out a back window, and they say police told them she had fired out a front window too. Next, she walked from her home two doors down to her sister's home. Then, just feet from her sister's porch, an Altavista Officer shot and killed her.
"I knew somebody had gotten shot, but I didn't know who it was," said Miller.
Towler's sister Margaret Davis did not want to speak on camera. She is still in shock after seeing police shoot and kill her sister right before her eyes. After this, Davis plans to move off Charlotte Avenue.
People living around Charlotte Ave. say in recent years say the neighborhood has changed. And the Altavista Police Department has really stepped up enforcement. One neighbor, who asked we do not reveal his face or name, doesn't like it.
"You want it back to the way it was?" we asked. "I mean, it was better, wasn't nobody getting killed. The town didn't feel like it is now."
A lot of questions still unanswered, leaving a neighborhood frustrated with its police.


Update 1:15 p.m.:

Altavista, VA - Family members say the woman killed Wednesday night by an Altavista police officer was Delma Towler, an 83-year-old woman.

Altavista Police Chief Clay Hamilton confirmed an Altavista police officer shot Towler.

Toller's sister, Margaret Davis, lives one house down on 10th Street. She says she saw her sister get shot Wednesday night.

According to Davis, police told her that Towler called 911 saying someone was breaking into her home.

Davis says she saw police officers on her street and in the area, and then she saw Towler get shot right in front of Davis' house.

Reporter Mark Kelly spoke to Towler's friend. We'll have that and more details on ABC 13 News at 5 and 6.


Altavista, VA - Virginia State Police are investigating a fatal shooting involving an Altavista police officer.

It happened Wednesday at around 10 p.m. at a home in Altavista.

Troopers say an officer shot and killed a woman.

They haven't identified the woman or the officer involved.

We'll bring you more information as we get it.