Courts & Legal News

Front Royal teen indicted on bomb hoax charge

FRONT ROYAL -- A grand jury on Monday indicted a teen accused of bringing a hoax bomb device to Warren County High School in January. Caleb Daniel Sutphin, 18, of Front Royal, was indicted on a felony bomb hoax charge. He is accused of making a fake bomb device out of gears, a phone charger ...

Motorcycle, car involved in Interstate 81 crash

A motorcycle and a car were involved in a crash on northbound Interstate 81  Sunday evening in Shenandoah County. According to Virginia State Police Sgt. F.L. (Les) Tyler, at 4:25 p.m. Sunday, a 2004 Pontiac was traveling in the left lane at mile marker 292 when the driver slowed for ...

Getaway driver found guilty on diner robbery charges

WOODSTOCK -- More than week after postponing his verdict, Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp on Friday found a Woodstock woman guilty on three charges after determining she was the getaway driver in the attempted robbery of Ben’s Diner in January. Hupp delivered his verdict after hearing ...

Woodstock man pleads guilty to drug distribution

WOODSTOCK --  A Woodstock man pleaded guilty on Friday to eight criminal charges including cocaine distribution and possession. Alexander Seal, 22, was one of 25 arrested in March 2017 after a year-long investigation conducted by the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office into drugs being ...

Three sentenced in drug cases

FRONT ROYAL --  Circuit Judge Clifford L. Athey Jr. sentenced three people Tuesday in drug cases in Warren Circuit Court. William Reinhardt, 31, of Star Tannery, pleaded guilty to possession of hydrocodone as part of a plea agreement. The charge stems from a September 2016 incident when ...

Manassas woman found guilty of three charges

WOODSTOCK -- After a nearly four-hour bench trial on Wednesday, Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp found a Manassas woman guilty of felony eluding police, refusing a breath test and driving after being declared a habitual offender. Sharon Blevins was indicted in January on the three charges, all ...

Strasburg man pleads guilty to larceny charges

WOODSTOCK -- A Strasburg man pleaded guilty Friday to a grand larceny charge from November 2016 when he stole an Xbox gaming console and video game and sold it to someone else. Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp accepted a plea agreement for Kaleb Ryan Williams, 20, after Deputy Commonwealth's ...

Judge sends teen’s murder charge to grand jury

FRONT ROYAL – The case of a teenager accused of stabbing and killing his girlfriend in town in March goes to a grand jury next month. Judge Kim Athey found probable cause at the end of a preliminary hearing in Warren County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court on Thursday to send the ...

Teen suspect to undergo psych evaluation

WOODSTOCK -- Judge Kevin C. Black granted an order on Thursday to perform a psychological evaluation on the Edinburg teen accused of stabbing a mother and her two daughters in a park on May 18. Samual Jacob Homer, 18, said, according to court documents, that he was possessed by the devil who ...

Judge continues attempted robbery trial

WOODSTOCK -- Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp continued a bench trial Wednesday in the case against a Woodstock woman accused of being the getaway driver in an attempted robbery of Ben’s Diner in January. Andrea Scalf, 43, is one of four defendants facing charges related to the attempted robbery ...

Strasburg man gets maximum sentence in child sex case

WOODSTOCK -- Judge Dennis L. Hupp on Wednesday upheld a jury’s earlier recommendations for the maximum sentence in the case against a Strasburg man found guilty of committing sex acts against a boy in 2012. Richard Owen Keller, 41, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for the two charges he ...

Front Royal man pleads guilty in passenger’s death

FRONT ROYAL -- A Front Royal man pleaded guilty Monday to involuntary manslaughter in the traffic death of a woman in the passenger seat of his vehicle while he was driving with drugs in his system. Trevor Bryant Lee, 29, entered the plea after the prosecution asked Circuit Judge Clifford L. ...

Fort Valley man pleads guilty to assault

WOODSTOCK -- A Fort Valley, Virginia man pleaded guilty on Monday in Shenandoah Circuit Court to an amended felony malicious wounding indictment that lessened the charge to misdemeanor assault and battery. William Houston Rutz, 22, formerly of Strasburg, attacked Matthew Murphy, of Mount ...

Woman must pay for destroying luxury cars

WOODSTOCK -- Judge Dennis L. Hupp has ordered a Martinsburg, West Virginia woman to pay more than $100,000 to victims whose property, including two luxury cars, she destroyed. Augusta Fleming, 34, pleaded guilty on May 10 to three counts of intentional destruction of property, petit larceny ...

Case postponed for attempted murder suspect

WINCHESTER -- A preliminary hearing for entering a plea or setting a trial date for a Martinsburg, West Virginia, man charged with attempted first-degree murder and shooting at a motor vehicle was postponed on Friday in Frederick County Circuit Court. Ellis Fennel, 28, is accused of shooting ...

Caretaker pleads guilty to murder

WINCHESTER -- A Berryille woman accused of killing a woman in her care pleaded guilty to an amended murder charge in Frederick County Circuit Court Thursday. The defendant, Frances Moss-Hopkins, 56, entered an Alford plea in an agreement that changed the offense from first-degree to ...

Drug and sex charges, others fill court docket

WOODSTOCK -- Wednesday’s court proceedings in Shenandoah County Circuit Court, heard by Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp, saw a slew of drug cases as well as several cases involving sexual offenses. The prosecution dropped the two drug related charges against Samantha Burner, of Maurertown, ...

Judge allows new witness in murder trial in cab driver’s death

FRONT ROYAL -- Circuit Judge Clifford L. Athey Jr. allowed the prosecution on Monday to add an expert witness in the trial of Clay Marshall Curtis, who was indicted in December 2014 in the shooting death of Front Royal cab driver Simon Funk. Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Layton ...

Drug cases fill court docket

FRONT ROYAL--The Warren County Circuit Court proceedings for Monday saw many drug-related cases. A pretrial hearing for the case against James Boardwine, of Front Royal, who was charged in 2014 with heroin distribution, heroin possession with the intent to distribute, and three counts of ...

Three charges against teacher are dropped

WOODSTOCK -- Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Louis Campola filed a motion Thursday to drop three of the eight charges against Phillip Finfrock, 36, of Strasburg, the Frederick County special education teacher accused of abusing his wife and blaming her for her child’s physical ...