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Posted May 14, 2013 | comments Leave a comment

Special prosecutor appointed for disorderly conduct case

By Joe Beck

A special prosecutor has been appointed to replace Shenandoah County Commonwealth's Attorney Amanda M. Wiseley in the disorderly conduct case of a Strasburg man accused of bringing a board into an elementary school bearing the words "high powered rifle."

Wiseley cited a conflict of interest arising from a subpoena filed by defense attorney David Silek. Silek, who has offices in Manassas and Front Royal, issued a subpoena on May 2 that included Wiseley's mother, Vicky C. McDonald, according to court documents.

The documents identify Vicky C. McDonald as a teacher at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the scene of an incident in mid-December in which authorities say Christopher Gerrit Johnson entered the school with the board.

"His counsel subpoened 100 employees at Sandy Hook," Wiseley said of Johnson in an interview Tuesday. "One of them is my mother."

The documents also state that Silek has suggested he may call Wiseley's 6-year-old daughter, who is a Sandy Hook student, as a witness.

Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp granted Amanda Wiseley's motion that Frederick County Commonwealth's Attorney Ross P. Spicer be appointed to replace her.

The motion for appointment of a special prosecutor states that Wiseley and the attorneys in her office are "so situated with respect to witnesses in the matter as to make it improper, in her opinion, for her or the attorneys in her employ to act in reference" to the Johnson case.

The case is scheduled for a jury trial in Shenandoah County General District Court in July.

Silek previously spoke of subpoenaing many members of the school faculty and staff, and Wiseley's motion confirmed he has followed through on his statements.

The list of subpoened witnesses "constitutes the majority, if not all of the staff (administrators, teachers, aides, and custodians at Sandy Hook Elementary School," Wiseley wrote in her motion.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com

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