high profile cases and highlights


by Portsia Smith | Fredericksburg.com
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A jury of nine women and three men decided last night that John Wayne Peck was not guilty of murder in the 2006 fatal shooting death of a hunting buddy in Caroline County.

The jury began deliberations about 6 p.m. and reached its verdict after 10.

Earlier the jurors heard Peck, 29, give an emotional account of what happened the night of Oct. 9, 2006.

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Fredericksburg man found innocent

by Nathaniel Cline | Westmoreland News
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A Fredericksburg homebuilder was found not guilty last Thursday of a rape that allegedly occurred in the parking lot of the Riverboat in Colonial Beach.

In less than 25 minutes, a Westmoreland County jury found the defendant, not guilty of raping alleged victim Lutrisha Mussleman.

On Oct. 22, 2009, Musselman’s evening of meeting with friends and family ended quickly after she was escorted out of the Riverboat Restaurant for exceeding the restaurant’s alcohol policy, she testified.

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Man Facing Possible Life Sentence Found Not Guilty

by Keith Epps | The Freelance Star
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A Stafford jury took about 20 minutes to find a man who had been facing a potential life sentence not guilty.

Ronzell D. Parker–Kimble, 20, was accused of stabbing 20-year-old Jeffrey Fleeton early on Aug. 17 outside a wild party on Longwood Drive in North Stafford.

Fleeton suffered a large gash on his stomach that required 28 staples and he also had surgery for a severe cut to his arm.

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Man cleared in Stafford County stabbing

by Keith Epps | The Freelance Star
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A young man accused of stabbing another man multiple times at a party in Stafford County last year was cleared Tuesday after the victim claimed he didn’t remember the incident.

Devin Lamont Laiche, 19, of Bumpass had been charged with aggravated malicious wounding, which carries a penalty of 20 years to life in prison.

The victim, 20-year-old Darayon Michael Bowens, testified in Stafford Circuit Court Tuesday that he didn’t know who stabbed him and wasn’t even sure that he was stabbed.

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Woman not guilty of slashing man's nose

by Keith Epps | The Freelance Star
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A woman who nearly cut off her then-boyfriend’s nose during a domestic altercation last year was cleared Tuesday by a Fredericksburg jury.

Brittany Nicole Carter, 23, of Fredericksburg was found not guilty of aggravated malicious wounding in Fredericksburg Circuit Court.

Defense attorney Jonathan David successfully argued that Carter was acting in self-defense May 11 when she sliced Richard B. Humphrey’s nose with a knife.

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Charges Dropped Against 3rd Man in Drive-By

by Toni Stinson | The Caroline Progress
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All charges were dropped Thursday against a Ruther Glen man in connection with a drive-by shooting last summer.

The man prosecutors had said was the getaway driver, had been charged in Caroline Circuit Court with attempted murder, attempted malicious wounding, attempted malicious wounding while part of a mob, discharging a firearm in an occupied dwelling, conspiracy to commit murder and three firearms charges.

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Charges dropped against Spotsy man

by Keith Epps | The Free Lance-Star
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Child molestation charges against a Spotsylvania County man have been dropped.

Coy Michael Stieglbauer had been scheduled for a jury trial next week on charges of rape, object sexual penetration, sodomy, aggravated sexual battery and indecent liberties. Three of the charges carry mandatory life sentences because the alleged victim is under 13.

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Dog mauling case in Spotsylvania ends with suspended sentence, dog ownership ban

by Keith Epps | The Freelance Star
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Cane CorsoA Spotsylvania County man whose dogs badly mauled his wife and a deputy during an attack last year won’t have to do any jail time, but also can’t own dogs in Virginia for a decade.

Vance Isiah Gibbs, 49, received a suspended 12-month jail sentence after pleading guilty to public nuisance-dog attack Monday in Spotsylvania Circuit Court. As part of a plea agreement worked out by prosecutor Ryan Mehaffey and defense attorney Jonathan David, two other charges were dropped.

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Virginia teen in court for shooting plot

by Bob Barnard | Fox 5 DC Fox5dc.com staff
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FREDERICKSBURG, Va. - Classes began as usual on Monday at Riverbend High School in Fredericksburg, but two students were notably absent.

Two weeks ago, a 17-year-old student was arrested for allegedly sending a threat to shoot up the Spotsylvania County school via text message. A 15-year-old accomplice was charged during a subsequent investigation.

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