Man pleads guilty in fatal shooting

A Fort Valley man has pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in Shenandoah County Circuit Court in the shooting death of Harry Grant Nelson III, 35, of Winchester.

The defendant, Daniel Scott Harvey, of 600 Stephens Lane, is scheduled to be sentenced at 2 p.m. Aug. 19 in circuit court.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Amanda McDonald Wiseley said in a written statement explaining her evidence that deputies arrived at Harvey’s home on March 31, 2014 and found Nelson lying next to a pickup truck with a gunshot wound to the torso. He was taken to Shenandoah Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after his arrival at 8:12 p.m.

Deputies arrested Harvey at the scene after they ordered him out of the house to where he had retreated after the shooting.

Wiseley said the investigation revealed that Harvey shot Nelson after the victim tried to intervene in an argument between Harvey and Alicia Macsorley, a woman who had stopped by the house and gone inside to pick up some personal belongings from Harvey. Nelson and another man, Joshua Shores, had accompanied Macsorley to the residence. As Macsorley and Harvey argued argued, the two emerged onto the porch area of the residence with Harvey holding a shotgun, Wiseley said.

Wiseley said Nelson began using a cellphone to videotape the argument while Harvey continued holding the shotgun.

As the argument escalated, Harvey, with his finger on the trigger, pointed the shotgun at Macsorley, Wiseley said.

Nelson said something to Harvey in what Wiseley called “an apparent attempt to divert the defendant’s attention away from Ms. Macsorley.”

At that point, Harvey turned and fired the shotgun into Nelson’s torso, Wiseley said.

Wiseley said the cellphone containing video of the argument and shooting fell to the ground. Macsorley ran off the porch to Nelson’s side as Shores fought for control of the gun and managed to wrest it from Harvey, Wiseley said.

Harvey then ran inside the residence, where he remained until the deputies ordered him out, Wiseley said. The shotgun was recovered around some vehicles, where it had landed after Shores tossed it beyond Harvey’s reach, Wiseley said.

Harvey was taken to Winchester Medical Center for treatment of injuries he sustained in the struggle with Shores. Harvey confessed to the shooting during an interview at the hospital with a sheriff’s office investigator, Wiseley said. A later investigation by the Virginia Department of Forensic Science concluded that the slug recovered from Nelson was fired from the same shotgun found at the crime scene, Wiseley said.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner stated in an autopsy report that Nelson died of a gunshot wound to the abdomen.

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