On Tuesday morning, Detective David Edward Abbott stepped outside his home to speak with the police officers surrounding it. They were there to arrest him for allegedly soliciting a 13-year-old boy for sex. Rather than surrender, Abbott pulled out a gun and fatally shot himself.
The 7 a.m. act brought an end to David Abbott’s life, but it did not end the shocking scandal, which continues to unravel in the aftermath of his suicide.
Prior to the events earlier this week, Heavy writes that Abbott was an award-winning and highly respected police detective in Manassas, Virginia. A police officer for 14 years, David was a member of the Northern Virginia-Washington D.C. Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Abbott was also a “longtime” youth hockey coach as confirmed by the Prince William Hockey Club. It was David Abbott’s work at the hockey club that ultimately led to the charges against him.
According to the Washington Post, Prince William County police moved to arrest the 39-year-old detective after learning on Monday of inappropriate acts involving a 13-year-old boy. Specifically, David Edward Abbott was said to have “sexted” this young teen for two years, starting when he was just 11 years of age. During this time, the victim was also said to have had “face-to-face” interaction with Abbott through the hockey program.
Police detective who led controversial teen 'sexting' case kills himself amid molestation accusation https://t.co/XJCPfTpLdg
— The Independent (@Independent) December 16, 2015
The victim was contacted by David “by phone and social media,” at which point the officer requested various sexual favors. An alleged second victim was also identified by police; this teen was reported as 13 at the time Abbott first contacted him requesting sexual favors in 2008.
Prince William County authorities secured warrants as quickly as possible and then moved to arrest Abbott in the early hours of Tuesday morning. The Post writes that police surrounded the detective’s townhouse residence at 2:30 a.m. In order to avoid any potential civilian casualties, Prince William Sgt. Jonathan Perok explained that nearby homes were evacuated as a precaution.
It’s reported that the standoff between Abbott and police lasted nearly four hours. Prince William officials thought they’d made progress when Abbott finally came out of his townhouse and began talking to authorities. He instead took his own life. People magazine said that Abbott died “in his home.”
The Prince William County Police Department released a report to Facebook on Tuesday that confirms this.
“While detectives were communicating with the accused, he pulled out a handgun and shot himself. The accused was pronounced dead at the scene.”
In an interesting twist, Abbott was recently involved in a lawsuit following a bizarre request during a teen “sexting” case in 2014. A 17-year-old boy faced serious charges for sending photos of his erect penis to his 15-year-old girlfriend. During the case, it was reportedly suggested that Abbott obtained photos of the suspect’s erect penis to “compare” them to photos sent to the girl.
The 17-year-old suspect’s lawyer, Jessica Harbeson Foster, was outraged and told the Washington Post the suggestion was “crazy.” Despite reports that it was the idea of the prosecution for Abbott to obtain the photos, it was Abbott himself that moved to sue the teen suspect’s lawyer for libel after she made the critical statements of the plan to the Post.
Detective in Manassas teen 'sexting' case sues defense atty for libel for her comments criticizing case: http://t.co/cOMqGKyaKF
— Tom Jackman (@stateofnova) November 13, 2014
David Abbott complained in the lawsuit, which he dropped nearly one month before Tuesday’s events unfolded, that the insult “harmed his reputation” and suggested that he was unfit to perform his duties.
It’s a situation that genuinely baffled quite a few people in the community. Why go to such lengths in response to a throwaway remark? Why be so terrified that a scheme to obtain a teen’s erect penis being called “crazy” could harm his career?
Was it because David Edward Abbott needed that perception of flawlessness to prevent anyone from suspecting that he himself was a child predator? With the violent end to Abbot’s life, there may never be fully satisfactory answers provided for the many questions he left behind.
[Image via Prince William County Police Department]