Aggravated malicious wounding case sent to grand jury

Christopher McCormick

WOODSTOCK – The case of an Ohio man accused of aggravated malicious wounding will come before a Shenadoah grand jury after a preliminary hearing on Friday.

Christopher McCormick, 30, was charged Sept. 1 with aggravated malicious wounding, strangulation and destruction of property after law enforcement reported he attacked a man with a wine bottle, hit him and put him in a choke hold.

The victim in the case, 67-year-old Joseph O’Meara, and responding Deputy C. A. Markin, of the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office, gave testimonies describing the events leading up to the incident. O’Meara described the incident, saying that McCormick attacked him after he made a joke about McCormick trying to open a wine bottle with a rusty nail.

O’Meara said that once he recovered consciousness from the choke hold, he went inside to inspect his injuries. He said he had sustained bruises on his neck and body that had since faded and a facial fracture following the attack. He said that without an implant, he would’ve lost an eye.

Markin said that when he responded to 1115 Copp Road for a disturbance, McCormick approached him from the porch and kneeled with his hands behind his head and blood on his hands and forearms. In interviews, he said McCormick told him that O’Meara had started “vicious rumors” about him and he had returned to the residence planning to kill O’Meara.

In closing arguments, Ramsey brought the aggravated element of the charge into question, which requires that the victim has suffered a permanent or significant physical impairment because of the assault. With testimony from O’Meara about the implant, Judge Amy Tisinger didn’t reduce the aggravated malicious wounding charge.

Ramsey had voiced concerns for McCormick’s medical treatment at Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail during previous bond hearings. Before leaving the courtroom Friday, McCormick thanked Tisinger for an email sent to the jail and told her he had been getting medical care.

McCormick was remanded into custody after the hearing. His case will come before a grand jury in November.

Contact staff writer Rachel Mahoney at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or