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Joe Beck

Beck_JosephP_8_11.jpg Joe Beck is a senior reporter for the Northern Virginia Daily. He reports on crime, public safety and courts news.
E-mail: jbeck@nvdaily.com | Phone: 540-465-5317, ext.142

Recent stories by Joe Beck

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Man sought in Frederick County bank robbery

A man robbed the United Bank at 199 Front Royal Pike in Winchester on Monday morning and escaped with an undisclosed amount of money.
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Subpoenas seek information on undercover cigarette sting

A defense attorney in a cigarette trafficking case is seeking to subpoena undercover law enforcement officers and documents associated with the Shenandoah County Sheriff's Office anti-cigarette trafficking operations.
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List of charges against burglary suspect grows

WOODSTOCK - The list of charges against a man who authorities believe committed a string of burglaries last fall and early this year has grown to 27 after the latest grand jury indictments in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
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Wolf disappointed in McAuliffe's stance on heroin

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's rejection of a call for creation of a statewide task force on heroin shows the governor is "really going to miss the boat" in addressing the spread of the drug, U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Vienna, said Wednesday.
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Middletown police car damaged in accident

One of the Middletown police department's cruisers has been off the road since July 12 as a result of damage from a collision with a civilian vehicle.
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Heroin overdose suspected in Shenandoah County death

The head of the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force said Tuesday that the death of a 28-year-old Lebanon Church man on Saturday was likely the 19th in the Northern Shenandoah Valley this year attributable to a heroin overdose.
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Holtzman donates $10,000 to McDonnell's legal defense fund

William Holtzman, CEO of Holtzman Oil Corp. in Mount Jackson, gave $10,000 in recent months to the legal defense fund of former Gov. Robert F. McDonnell in McDonnell's fight against federal corruption charges.
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Defense attorney describes futility of RSW jail visit

FRONT ROYAL -- A motion filed in Warren County Circuit Court a few days ago sheds light on mounting complaints from defense attorneys about what they describe as the failure of the newly opened Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail on U.S. 340-522 to grant them adequate access to their clients.
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Foust opens Winchester office for congressional race

The importance of women voters to Democratic hopes in the fall congressional elections was on display Friday in Winchester with the opening of a field office for10th District candidate John Foust.
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Strasburg man gets year in jail for attempted arson

A Strasburg man will serve a year in jail after pleading guilty to two attempted arson-related counts Monday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
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More indictments issued in cigarette smuggling cases

Law enforcement's efforts to crack down on the smuggling of cigarettes from Virginia to other states continued Wednesday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court with the grand jury indictments of three more men from other states.
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Meem's Bottom Bridge damaged again, repairs underway

The Meem's Bottom Bridge has received its share of punishing blows during its long history, so it was no surprise to state road officials when it took another hit Sunday, this one from a tractor trailer that failed to squeeze in under the bridge roof.
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Man accused of killing cat with bow and arrow

A Middletown man is facing a felony charge of torturing an animal and causing its death following his indictment by a grand jury Thursday in Frederick County Circuit Court.
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Front Royal firefighters ready to step off for parade

Wayne Sealock's memories of the annual Front Royal Volunteer Fire Company's annual fireman's parade go back a long way.
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Last defendant in prostitution sting pleads guilty

The last of seven defendants arrested in connection with a prostitution sting conducted by local law enforcement pleaded guilty Monday in Shenenandoah County General District Court.
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Judge: Defense attorneys must disclose records in murder case

WOODSTOCK - Defense attorneys for accused murderer Claude Shafer cannot withhold background information about their client from the prosecution, Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp ruled in a hearing Friday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
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Three arrested after Front Royal heroin bust

Members of the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force arrested three men during a heroin bust at the home of two of the defendants on June 26, Front Royal police disclosed late Friday.
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Stephens City man faces child sex assault charges in New Jersey

A Stephens City man appeared in a Freehold, New Jersey, courtroom Tuesday on five counts linked to sexual assaults of two minors in that community.
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Man, woman accused in beating of Strasburg man

WOODSTOCK -- A man and a woman have been charged with aggravated malicious wounding in a June 25 incident that sent a Strasburg man to the hospital with a broken jaw and broken ribs.
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Wanted man turns himself in to Strasburg police

The Strasburg Police Department's Facebook page calls the arrest Wednesday of Jeremiah Lanham, 30, of Mauertown, the easiest ever made by the department.
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Fires damage two buildings in Front Royal

Front Royal firefighters were kept busy late Sunday night and early Monday morning with a pair of fires that broke out within a few hours of each other.
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Vasectomy plea deal draws attention from national media

The case of an Edinburg man who agreed to undergo a vasectomy as a condition of probation has kept some people in the Shenandoah County court system answering inquiries from a variety of media outlets during the past week.
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Two more men facing cigarette trafficking charges

Two Brooklyn, N.Y. men appeared in Shenandoah County General District Court Friday, both on charges of selling, transporting, receiving or possessing 500 or more packages of improperly stamped cigarettes for the purposes of evading taxes on them.
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Three cigarette smuggling cases emerge in court

WOODSTOCK -- Hearings in Shenandoah County Circuit Court on Thursday on three cases involving defendants facing a long list of charges linked to cigarette smuggling shed new light on an extensive investigation mounted by the county Sheriff's Office against illicit cigarette sales.
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PROGRESS 2014: Public safety officials move ahead on old, new challenges

Chief Richard E. Mabie of the Warren County Fire and Rescue Services spent a lot of time in 2013 trying to resurrect the defunct the Shenandoah Farms Volunteer Fire Department. Despite some improvements, the fire station on Howellsville Road remains far from where he would like it to be.
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Man pleads guilty to two sex offenses in police online sting

A Woodstock man accused of soliciting sex with a boy online who turned out to be a police investigator was convicted and sentenced Wednesday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
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Judge rejects sleepwalking defense in domestic violence case

Marvin Lee Markley claimed in Shenandoah County Circuit Court Wednesday that he was sleepwalking when he broke his girlfriend's nose and ribs, but his unusual defense wasn't enough to prevent him from being convicted of unlawful wounding and domestic assault and battery.
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Defendant contests charges after videotaping police while armed

Andrew Charles Studds insists he wasn't doing anything wrong when he videotaped Front Royal police while carrying a holstered gun on his right hip as they conducted traffic stops a few weeks ago.
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Excessive force cited as reason for officer's dismissal

Former Strasburg police officer Aaron H. Lewis lost his job over accusations that he used excessive force against a suspect in a drug case, falsification of records and violation of safety rules without a threat to life, according to documents in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.
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Billboards depicting fiery crash ask for Jeep Cherokee recall

Jenelle Embrey shows no sign of letting up on her efforts to get the federal government to recall some Jeep Cherokees, and she is paying for a trio of billboards to prove it.
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Three sentenced for roles in Winchester crack dealing ring

A man described in court documents as the leader and enforcer of an extensive crack cocaine ring in Winchester was sentenced last week in U.S. District Court to life imprisonment.
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Progress 2013: New technology aids public safety workers

The gunshots that took the life of a Woodstock man as he struggled with law enforcement officers on the night of July 20 proved to be an unlikely catalyst for technological change among several police agencies in the Northern Shenandoah Valley.
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Keyser recalled as 'old southern sheriff'

Former Warren County Sheriff Gary Turner Keyser, remembered by colleagues as one of the last of the old-time small town sheriffs, died Saturday at Blue Ridge Hospice Inpatient Care Center in Winchester.










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