2017-04-19 / News Briefs



Buried fetus suffered head wounds

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of Virginia has disclosed that an aborted fetus found buried in a Chesterfield backyard suffered from head injuries and the mother’s drug use.

In February 2016, law enforcement was informed that the skeletal remains of a fetus were buried in the backyard of a home in the 6200 block of Philbrook Road. Upon investigation, one of the residents of the home confirmed to police that there were remains on the property. After a search warrant was issued, the remains of an unborn child were found, buried roughly half a year earlier.

Last week, the medical examiner’s office disclosed its findings on the remains: “The cause of death for the fetus was fetal demise associated with penetrating injuries to the head and material use of methadone, alprazolam and amphetamines, and the manner of death was undetermined,” said Jeannette Collins, central district administrator of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Richmond.

Michelle Frances Roberts, 46, has been charged with producing an abortion or miscarriage “with intent to destroy her unborn child,” a Class 4 felony. Roberts’ attorney H. Pratt Cook III declined to comment on the case.

County police pull 50 body cams for overheating

County police have temporarily pulled about 50 body cameras from service after cables overheated on several units.

Two weeks ago, the Chesterfield County Police Department trained roughly 50 officers to use the agency’s first round of body-worn cameras. Soon after the rollout, the department received reports from officers that the power cords running from the battery pack to the camera were overheating. Axon – formerly known as Taser International – has a contract with the police department to equip 450 officers with cameras by September.

“We received reports that a number of them had malfunctioned,” said Maj. Brad Badgerow via email. “As a precaution, the decision was made to pull all of the cameras off the road and contact Axon.”

Badgerow says Axon has responded to the department’s concerns, and is working to ship a new batch of cameras. County police has a $2.25 million, five-year contract for the cameras.

Motorcyclist killed in Beach Road accident

County police are investigating a fatal motorcycle crash that occurred in the 14000 block of Beach Road on April 16.

At about 2:30 p.m., Michael S. Griffin, 53, was traveling east on Beach Road when he lost control of his motorcycle and ran off the road into a wooded area. Griffin, of the 7300 block of Port Side Drive, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police are asking that anyone with information about the crash call 748-1785.

Man robs Wells Fargo in Chester

County police are searching for a man who robbed the Wells Fargo Bank at 13241 Rivers Bend Blvd. on April 14.

At about 4:42 p.m., a man entered the branch and handed the clerk a note demanding money. The suspect fled the bank on foot with an undisclosed amount of money.

The suspect is described as a black male in his early 30s with an average build, facial hair and glasses. He was wearing a hat and a plaid shirt.

Anyone with information is asked to contact county police at 748-1251 or Crime Solvers at 748-0660.

Driver dies in Chester Road crash

County police are investigating a fatal crash that occurred on April 12 in the 11200 block of Chester Road.

At about 10:07 p.m., a Hyundai Accent was traveling south on Chester Road when it crossed into the northbound travel lanes and struck a Honda Civic.

The driver of the Hyundai, Nickolas Nunnally, 31, of the 12900 block of Erlene Drive, died at the scene as a result of his injuries. The driver of the Honda was transported to VCU Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

Man dies in crash on Ruffin Mill Road

County police are investigating a fatal single-vehicle crash that took place on March 7 in the 2100 block of Ruffin Mill Road.

At about 11:20 p.m., a 1994 Buick LeSabre was traveling east on Ruffin Mill Road when it ran off the road, striking a cement culvert and ditch. The impact caused the vehicle to go airborne, roll multiple times and catch fire. The driver of the vehicle, James S. Smith, 60, of the 1900 block of Bainbridge Street in Richmond, died of his injuries.

Police say a preliminary investigation indicates that speed was a contributing factor in the crash.

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