ABINGDON, Va. (WJHL) – Washington County, Virginia deputies searched the home of Austin Lee Edwards — the alleged killer of three members of a family in California — on Nov. 25, and officials say the action was ordered after they were contacted by Riverside California Police Department investigators.
According to a release from the Washington County, Virginia Sheriff’s Office (WCSO), officers with Riverside PD reached out on Nov. 25. While police were pursuing Edwards on the other side of the country, the release said deputies with WCSO went to his Saltville residence and made an “emergency entrance” into his home. Riverside PD representatives said the department was unaware of any activity at Edwards’ home at that time.
Some reasons for that entrance, the WCSO release said, were to determine the location of Edwards’ WCSO-issued weapons and to ensure there were no other victims in his home. Deputies reportedly saw Edwards’ uniform, bullet proof vest, duty belt and other equipment on the home’s back porch, but they could not locate his handgun. That information was then relayed to California investigators, the release said.
Investigators also searched the WCSO-issued patrol vehicle on the property and found Edwards’ assigned shotgun and rifle.
A search warrant was obtained on Nov. 26, after WCSO investigators helped Riverside PD officers secure an affidavit. Once that warrant was served, the report said evidence collected from Edwards’ house was released to FBI investigators.