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Courts and Crime

  • Jury finds Forest woman not guilty of indecent liberties charge

    A Bedford County woman has been found not guilty of taking indecent liberties with a minor in custodial care by a Bedford County jury Wednesday.

    Valerie Casto, 40, of Forest, was an eighth grade teacher at Dunbar Middle School. The Bedford County Commonwealth's Attorney's office claimed that Casto had exposed herself to a former student, who had just turned 15, at her Forest home.

  • Forest woman not guilty of indecent liberties with minor

    A Bedford County woman was found not guilty, Wednesday morning in Bedford County Circuit Court, of taking indecent liberties with a minor.

  • Preliminary hearing rescheduled in motorcycle crash case

    A preliminary hearing for the Bedford woman charged with two counts of felony maiming, DUI, in connection with an incident that occurred over Memorial Day weekend has been rescheduled for Oct. 26 at 1:30 p.m. in General District Court.

        That hearing had originally been set for August 31.

  • Man enters plea to abduction charge

    A 77-year-old Bedford man pleaded no contest Friday to abducting a 22-year-old woman in April.

        According to Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Mark Robinette, Emory Hale was driving on Independence Boulevard on April 20 when he spotted the woman walking along the side of the road. Hale stopped and asked the woman, who was walking to her job at Arby’s, if she wanted a ride to work.

  • Man pleads guilty to embezzlement

        A Lynchburg man, charged with embezzling as much as $10,000 from the Quick E Food store on Forest Road, pleaded guilty Friday to the charge in Bedford County Circuit Court.

        Michael Davis, 63, admitted that while he worked as a clerk in the store for about six months he would pocket cash used to pay for cigarettes and beer by customers, rather than ringing those purchases up at the cash register.
        However, his lawyer, Michael Lonchar, disputed the amount that was taken, stating it was more like $3,000.

  • Some details of shooting revealed at bond hearing

        Two different accounts as to what happened during a fatal shooting on Johnson Mountain Road last month began to be presented during a bond hearing  last Thursday for Michael Thomas Loboschefski, who is charged with first degree murder in the incident.

         Loboschefski’s friends and attorney state the shots he fired came in self defense; Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Wes Nance states the accounts surrounding the shooting are inconsistent and self serving.

  • Shifflett receives suspended sentence

        Deborah Shifflett, widow of the late Jeffrey Shifflett, won’t be spending any time in jail, providing she maintains good behavior and pays $7,500 in restitution to the Hardy Volunteer Fire Department.

        Earlier this year, Shifflett pleaded no contest to seven misdemeanor charges of interference with property rights. She had originally faced 13 felony embezzlement charges.

  • Deaths of dogs called ‘mysterious’

    Animal control officers with the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office are investigating the “mysterious” deaths of at least eight dogs in the Forest area.

        The deaths have occurred in the areas around Thomas Jefferson Road and Maple Street. A number of dogs have been found dead at their homes and others occurred after sick dogs had been taken to local veterinarians.
        According to Sheriff Mike Brown the deaths occurred during the past two weeks.

  • Condition of shooting victims upgraded

        The condition of the two victims from last week’s Haven Heights Drive shooting has been upgraded to stable, according to Bedford County Sheriff Mike Brown.

        At least one of those victims should be able to talk with investigators soon, he added.

  • Cop camp proves to be a real blast

        The Bedford area’s Cop Camp drew 130 local children, once again the maximum they are able to accommodate. The camp gives the kids a chance to get a close look at what police officers do.