Chesapeake Kayak Shooting Apparently a Tall Tale

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This just in from the “Couldn’t Get Any Weirder” files: A man who in April reported that he had been shot while kayaking on Bodkin Creek off Chesapeake Bay (Read the story) is in critical condition after two self-inflicted gunshot wounds he sustained as Fairfax County Police attempted to serve a search warrant on his Reston, Virginia, home.

David Seafolk-Kopp, 56, first made headlines last April when he was taken to University of Maryland’s Shock Trauma unit with a gunshot wound he said he received while night kayaking on Bodkin Creek, a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay shown above. Seafolk-Kopp claimed then that he had been shot just after seeing a laser-like red beam from shore. But as police agencies dug deeper into what had really happened that night, things just didn’t add up.

Candy Thomson, public information officer for the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) says, “Emergency medical technicians and paramedics reported that his physical condition wasn’t consistent with someone who had been struggling to get ashore over a long, cold night. Specifically, he showed no signs of hypothermia. Additionally, paramedics reported that there wasn’t enough blood on his clothes to suggest a fresh gunshot wound.”

Seafolk-Kopp also stopped cooperating with the investigation soon after he was hospitalized—just as divers searched the bottom of Bodkin Creek for a gun and officers canvassed the surrounding shoreside neighborhood for clues. “He just didn’t have much to say to us after his initial statements,” Thomson says, adding, “He was just done with talking at that point.”

When routine gunshot residue tests performed on Seafolk-Kopp the night of the shooting came back positive, police were able to obtain search warrants for his Reston home and the residence of his daughter. When police knocked, Seafolk-Kopp opened the door and then shot himself once in the face and once in the torso, according to Fairfax County Police reports. According to state records, Seafolk-Kopp has 31 firearms registered to him in the state of Maryland. He is currently in critical condition at an undisclosed hospital.

What’s next for the Pinocchio kayaker? Thomson says it’s ultimately up to the state’s attorney as to whether any charges will be filed against Seafolk-Kopp, but certainly there’s reasonable evidence to support charges for obstruction of justice, and filing a false report. Stay tuned.