A man accused of trying to kill two law enforcement officers in Shenandoah County in June pleaded guilty to lesser charges on Wednesday.
Branden Michael Fauber appeared in Shenandoah County Circuit Court where he stood charged on two counts of attempted capital murder of a law enforcement officer.
Fauber, 39, of Basye, faced up to life in prison if convicted of each class 2 felony. The court had scheduled his three-day trial to begin Monday. Commonwealth’s Attorney Amanda M. Wiseley and Fauber’s defense counsel reached a plea agreement, which they presented to the court Wednesday.
Fauber pleaded guilty per the agreement to lesser charges of misdemeanor reckless handling of a firearm and felony possession of a schedule I or II controlled substance.
Retired Circuit Judge Thomas J. Wilson IV accepted Fauber’s pleas and sentenced the defendant to 12 months in jail for reckless handling of a firearm. The judge imposed the punishment per the agreement. The judge ordered Fauber to serve one year of supervised probation and to pay a $2,500 fine.
Fauber received credit for time served while awaiting trial since his booking in Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail on June 25. Fauber was released from the jail the same day as his sentencing.
Per the agreement, Sharp withheld adjudication of Fauber’s drug charge and deferred disposition of the case for two years to March 2025. The court agrees to dismiss the charge in two years if Fauber completes 200 hours of community service and supervised probation. He must also complete substance abuse and mental health evaluations and follow the recommendations for each assessment.
The commonwealth’s attorney consulted the victims about the plea agreement. The victims did not object, court records show.
Court documents indicate Fauber contacted the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office on June 24 and reported a suspicious person. Deputy T.J Justice and Investigator K.B. Austin responded to the call. The officers arrived and made contact with Fauber’s girlfriend who told them he was inside the residence and may have a firearm, according to a criminal complaint.
“Both Law Enforcement Officers requested Fauber to come outside and identified themselves several times when Fauber shot one round from a firearm in their direction so close both the Deputy and Investigator could ‘hear the bullet go by,’” the complaint states.
At an earlier bond hearing, Wiseley provided more details to the court about the incident, including the hours-long standoff between Fauber and law enforcement agents.
For those commenting. Deals like this are made for good reason. Maybe the original charges cannot be proved and to avoid seeing a trial with a not guilty finding there is a reduction. Believe me. There are valid reasons for this.
Odd...the article first says former Rockingham Judge T.J. Wilson tried the case, and then seems to mention that Judge Sharp withheld adjudication....and I don't think it happened with two judges.
Articles here get worse and worse.
What did this guy do to deserve a lesser charge ? Do your jobs and put these people in prison where they belong.
Please tell me how the Commonwealth and the judge thinks this is protecting our LEOs. There should of never been a deal made.
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