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Exclusive: Search warrants led to manhunt for Spotsy triple murder suspect

by | Jun 10, 2024 | ALLFFP, Police and Fire, Spotsylvania

Two hours after Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office deputies discovered three homicide victims during a welfare check last Tuesday night, a friend of suspect Alyssa Jane Venable arrived at the sheriff’s office with vital information. 

According to search warrants obtained by the Free Press, that friend and her boyfriend showed up with two envelopes containing money, instructions, and a possible suicide note from Venable. The friend retrieved the envelopes from her mother’s mailbox and also informed the sheriff’s office that Venable possessed a handgun given to her by her late grandfather. 

That pivotal tip sent investigators — including U.S. Marshals — on a two-day manhunt for Venable, suspected of murdering her three roommates at the two-story single-family rental home they shared at the 10500 block of White Street Court off Benchmark Road in Spotsylvania. 

On June 4, around 10:17 p.m., the sheriff’s office responded to a caller who stated he walked into the house and found his roommate lying on the couch with a pillow over his bleeding head. When deputies arrived, they confirmed the man was deceased and then located two additional individuals with gunshot wounds. One was found in the bathroom and the other in the detached garage. 

Detectives from the sheriff’s office subsequently executed two search warrants for the property. The first, issued just after midnight on June 5, turned up three cartridge cases, two cell phones, a backpack with a tablet, a folder with documents and a plastic bag with white crystals (possibly narcotics according to the warrant). 

During the execution of the second search warrant, on June 6, deputies recovered documents and a backpack with a notebook. 

Venable was ultimately apprehended June 6 by New York State Police troopers following a high-speed vehicle pursuit on Interstate 86 in Steuben County. The chase ended when she crashed her 2009 Honda Civic after a tire deflation device was deployed by police. Venable was transported to Guthrie Corning Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.   

Venable has not yet been extradited and no arraignment has been set, according to Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office Maj. Troy Skebo. The timing of Venable’s extradition could depend on whether she fights it, Skebo said. 

She is accused of first- and second-degree murder in the deaths of Robert John McGuire, 77, Gregory Scott Powell, 60 and Carol Anne Reese, 65. 

Venable was arraigned in Spotsylvania General District Court May 30 on a misdemeanor assault and battery charge related to a May 12 incident. That case was continued until June 28.

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