Accomack Circuit Court

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Bail was denied for 18-year-old Jordan Eric Ames, of Onancock, charged with the October 2021 murder of 23-year-old Nicholas Kyle Joseph, of Painter. Ames was indicted on attempted robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery, first-degree murder, second-degree murder, and use of a firearm. Commonwealth’s Attorney Spencer Morgan described Ames as “a danger to the public.” A second juvenile is also charged in the crime.

On the witness stand, Ames’ mother said her son has been successful while in a juvenile detention facility and had graduated from high school while held there. Morgan opposed bond for Ames, calling the crime a violent offense in a public area with a drug deal involved. The murder with which Ames is charged took place in the middle of the afternoon on Johnson Street in Onancock.

Morgan cited charges for crimes committed when Ames was a young teen. He completed a required period of probation for each and was not convicted. “Bail is denied,” Judge W. Revell Lewis III said, citing his concern that Ames was charged with a crime when he was younger, completed probation, and the charges were dismissed, and then Ames did the same thing again. “You just don’t get it,” Judge Lewis said. “You would be a danger to the public.”

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Joshua Russell, 48, of Atlantic, pleaded guilty to grand larceny in a plea agreement with the commonwealth. On Feb. 1, a deputy responded to Parksley Royal Farms. The driver of a tractor-trailer said he went inside the store and when he returned, he found numerous items missing from the cab of his tractor-trailer. Among the missing items was a Samsung tablet, a laptop computer, a cellphone, along with clothing and tools. The truck driver was able to track the whereabouts of his tablet. Investigation led officers to room 108 at Regal Inn in Onley. The man who answered the door said he had given a ride to Russell and when they stopped at Royal Farms, the man said, Russell told him he knew the truck driver and went over to the truck and returned with the stolen items. The plea agreement limits the time of active incarceration to two years in exchange for Russell’s guilty plea. A presentence investigation report was ordered. Russell will remain in custody until his Aug. 11 sentencing.

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Rysheed Lamar Clayton, 26, of Accomac, charged with possession of cocaine, opted to participate in the first offender program. He is set to return to court after one year of supervised probation, completion of 100 hours of community service, and payment of court costs. If successful, his felony drug charge will be dismissed.

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Jacob Paxton Carl Watson, 19, of Earleville, Md., charged with rape, object sexual penetration, and sexual battery was convicted only of sexual battery, a misdemeanor, in a bench trial. Watson and some friends spent an evening riding bikes, visiting in a Chincoteague park and later at a home he shared with his grandmother and brother and sister. He invited two girls to come to his house and said he would drive them home later. They decided to have some drinks and later thought it best to spend the night on his sofa rather than Watson driving them home after drinking.

The two girls were on sofas. One of the girls said Watson was behind her on the sofa and began to touch her breasts. She testified he pulled her shorts to the side and began touching her. She said he had sex with her. When arrested, he admitted to police that he touched her improperly while he thought she was asleep but went no further. He denied having sexual intercourse. On the witness stand, the girl testified she was shocked and frightened at what he was doing and pretended to be asleep. She said she never said anything. She said they had been friends for three years and said she was surprised at his actions.

When she awoke she told her friend they needed to leave. They told both their mothers what had occurred. The girl and her mother went to the Chincoteague police station and made a report. They were taken to Riverside Shore Memorial hospital where the girl was later examined by a nurse specializing in sexual assault cases. Test results showed no DNA belonging to Watson.

“You did not say don’t do this,” defense attorney Thomas Northam said to the girl. “You never tried to get away. You never asked anyone for help.” Northam said Watson’s grandmother and siblings were in the house at the time. The girl responded that she was terrified and thought she and her friend might be in danger if she said anything. “I made the decision not to speak out in case of violence,” she said.

Judge Lewis said the court is not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt you committed rape or object sexual penetration. “But the court is convinced you are guilty of sexual battery.” He sentenced Watson to 12 months in jail and suspended six of those months. Watson is to have no contact with the girl and must be on good behavior for three years.

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Leon W. Chisum, 35, of Painter, was in court after being issued a show cause to explain why he had failed to come to court for jury duty. Judge Lewis ordered him to complete 10 hours of community service and fined him $100. His case is continued to Aug. 18 to show proof of his community service and of the fine paid. “When you get a summons to appear in court,” admonished Judge Lewis. “It is not like an invitation to a party where you can choose to go or not to go.”

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