Thursday, August 13, 2015

Woman permit holder in VA in Jail for 9 months without bond, found not guilty

On October 18th, 2014,  a Concealed Handgun Permit holder, Victoria Lynn Jenkins, 52, defended herself from attack by a woman with multiple assault convictions.  Her attacker had been convicted of assault in 1989, 1990, 1995, 1999, and had an assault and battery conviction in 2001.   Jenkins' only  criminal history was a trespassing charge in 1994.  She had a license to carry her pistol.  The defense attorney argued for bail.  From
Defense attorney David Deal argued that Jenkins was a lifelong resident of Madison and Culpeper, with property and business interests in the latter and was not a flight risk. He said her actions were defensive in nature and that she had knife wounds in the hand and abdomen and bruising from being hit with a cell phone. He said she had no criminal history, other than a trespassing charge in 1994 and that her gun, which she did have a license to carry, had been confiscated.

“We would argue that this was an argument that got out of hand [and Jenkins] responded to being attacked,” Deal said.
 Virginia has a presumption against bond for the charge of malicious wounding.  That is the charge the prosecutor, George S. Webb, III, pressed.  The other two charges flow from that well.  Because the aggressor claimed that the defender in this case was the attacker, and the aggressor was in the hospital, the judge denied bond, noting that the denial could be appealed.

Appeals are expensive.  Victoria Lynn Jenkins spent nearly nine months in jail.

On August 6th, 2015, a jury found Victoria not guilty of malicious wounding,  not guilty of use of a firearm in a felony, and was hung on the charge of discharging a firearm in an occupied dwelling.    From
During the three-day trial, both women claimed self-defense. Bayne testified that while she was in the process of moving that day after a disagreement with Clements, an “agitated” Jenkins showed up “ranting and raving” and the two got into a fistfight before the shooting. Bayne said she was shot after besting Jenkins in the struggle.

Jenkins testified that her gun fell out of her purse during the altercation.

During the trial, defense attorney Blair Howard was allowed to introduce Bayne’s criminal history since his client maintained she was protecting herself from Bayne.
Given the conflicting testimony, I have to wonder why Bayne was not arrested on yet another assault and battery charge?  The evidence for her guilt was at least as strong as Jenkins'.   In fact, the jury found Jenkins not guilty, implying that Bayne was guilty.   The prosecutor had to know that he was sentencing Jenkins to jail without bond by pressing the malicious wounding charge.  

Given Bayne's long criminal history, and the lack of the same by Jenkins, the heavy handed prosecution of Jenkins seems quite peculiar.     

George S. Webb, III, lists his political affiliation as "Independent".  I could not find a picture of him.

Given the time involved, this case will be show up in the FBI UCR 2014 data as an aggravated assault with a firearm.  The FBI UCR tracks arrests, not convictions.

Perhaps someone with local knowledge can add some details and texture to this case.  

©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Because she was found not guilty, and the case was not simply dismissed, she WON'T be able to sue for malicious prosecution (a suit which many attys would take on a contingency basis). Too bad. She might have other grounds to sue under VA law, which I am not familiar with.

I am not an attorney-at-law, nor should this be considered legal advice.