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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Wytheville Woman Sues town, County Over Husband's Shooting

The Roanoke Times story can be found here. Basically, it appears from the article that the women and her husband had been promised that the killer, Douglas Albert Jaccard, would not be released on bond after having been arrested on indecent liberties charges. The suit claims that the intake magistrate noted Jaccard was:
angry and paranoid and likely to attempt to obstruct justice or threaten, injure or intimidate a witness, juror or victim.

It appears the magistrate presumed correctly. Joseph Bane, and Jerry Covey were shot by Jaccard, a neighbor on Dyer Road in the Barren Springs community in Wythe County in 2008, two days before he was scheduled for a hearing on the indecent liberties charges. After he shot Bane and Covey, Jaccard burned down the Banes' house. During the manhunt, he shot at deputies.

Jaccard was originally held without bond based on the magistrate's note but later, Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Frank Slavin, who is named in the lawsuit, agreed to a $10,000 bond in August of 2008. Banes' widow claims they were not notified and that the Commomwealth's Attorney's office did not take proper precautions or impose sufficient conditions when granting the bond.

This is a sad story that is repeated far to often in large cities around the country. A repeat offender is given bond, or worse, given light sentences only to create more mayhem. It is not a story you hear as often in small towns in rural America like Wytheville or Wythe County.

Jaccard was sentenced to in March to five life terms and 48 years in prison -- one life term each for first-degree murder, burglary, arson and two counts of attempted capital murder; 20 years for malicious wounding; three years for each of four counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony; five years for possessing a firearm as a convicted felon; five years for possessing explosive materials as a convicted felon; and three years each for two counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor for propositioning a teenage boy.

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