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Kirby v. Commonwealth

Court of Appeals of Virginia

September 2, 2014

QUINDELL MONTRAE KIRBY
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF CHESTERFIELD COUNTY. Harold W. Burgess, Jr., Judge.

Affirmed.

Todd M. Ritter (Daniels, Williams, Tuck & Ritter, on brief), for appellant.

Craig W. Stallard, Assistant Attorney General (Mark R. Herring, Attorney General; Donald E. Jeffrey, III, Senior Assistant Attorney General, on brief), for appellee.

Present: Judges Humphreys, Alston and Decker.

OPINION

Page 415

[63 Va.App. 667]  ROSSIE D. ALSTON, JR., JUDGE

Quindell Kirby (" appellant" ) was tried and convicted of second-degree murder and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. On appeal, he contends that the trial court erred when it denied his motion objecting to venue in Chesterfield County. He argues that venue was appropriate in the City of Richmond under Code § 19.2-247,[1] because the evidence did not establish the location of the offenses and the victim's body was found in the City of Richmond.[2] Finding venue appropriate in Chesterfield County, we affirm the trial court.

BACKGROUND

On the morning of October 18, 2011, Richmond police officers discovered the body of a man who had been shot and killed. The victim's body was found in the City of Richmond but only 160 feet from the Chesterfield County border. The murder investigation was later transferred to the Chesterfield County Police Department, and appellant was indicted in [63 Va.App. 668] Chesterfield County for murder and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.

At trial, the Commonwealth was unable to present evidence establishing the location of the murder.[3] Appellant therefore raised a motion objecting to venue in Chesterfield County. Citing Code § 19.2-247, which establishes venue for homicide prosecutions in the county or city where " the body of the victim [was] found" when it is otherwise " unknown where such crime was committed," appellant argued that Chesterfield County was not the proper venue for trial. He asserted that Code § 19.2-247 mandated venue in Richmond.

While acknowledging that the victim's body was found in Richmond, the Commonwealth argued that venue was appropriate in Chesterfield County because Code § 19.2-250(B) extends Chesterfield County's " jurisdiction . . . in criminal cases involving offenses against the Commonwealth . . . one mile beyond the limits of such county into the City of Richmond." Relying on the fact that the victim's body was found within Chesterfield County's extended jurisdiction, the Commonwealth argued that the trial court should construe Code § § 19.2-247 and 19.2-250(B) interdependently and determine that appellant was amenable to prosecution in Chesterfield County.

The trial court denied appellant's motion objecting to venue. ...


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