TOMS BROOK – The Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office has charged a 51-year-old Toms Brook man with second-degree murder in the shooting death of his stepson.
Investigators charged Todd Anthony Bly, of 22 Toms Brook Drive, in the Wednesday evening death of Phillip Lee Shifflett, 30, also of the same address.
Bly also was charged with use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
Bly appeared in Shenandoah County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court on Thursday morning before Judge Chad Logan, who ordered Bly to be held without bond at the Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail. Michael Araj was appointed as Bly's attorney, said Nikki Taylor, clerk for the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.
Deputies responded to the townhouse at 6:27 p.m. Wednesday where they found Shifflett, who had been shot in the upper body. Sheriff's Office Capt. Scotty Thompson said Thursday that Shifflett was pronounced dead later at Shenandoah Memorial Hospital in Woodstock.
Bly had left the townhouse before officers arrived but was soon detained by police at about 6:40 p.m. on Harrisville Road, according to a release from the Sheriff’s Office.
Thompson would not discuss a motive for the shooting but the news release states the shooting was believed to have been the result of a domestic dispute at the townhouse. He said he did not know if there was a history of calls for police service at that residence.
A revolver-style handgun was recovered, Thompson said.
An autopsy was to be conducted Thursday by the chief medical officer in Northern Virginia, and the investigation into the death is ongoing, Thompson said.
Neighbors said on Thursday morning they were unaware of anything occurring at the townhouse until they saw police.
Kimey Shreve, of Winchester, visited her adult daughter, who lives in a neighboring townhouse.
“Everything was roped off. They told me someone had been shot,” Shreve said.
They assured her it was safe but asked for her to remain inside the home.
Several neighbors said they did not hear any fight or gunshot, and they did not become aware that something was wrong until law enforcement had arrived.
“My 5-year-old daughter looked out the window and said there are police outside,” one woman said.
Neighbors also said they were not familiar with the family.
Normally the row of townhouses is quiet, they said.
This is the second homicide of 2019 being investigated by the Sheriff’s Office. The first occurred Jan. 26 when former county Supervisor Cynthia Dellinger was killed. The Sheriff’s Office charged David Knott with second-degree murder in connection with Dellinger's death.