Jul. 1—PRINCETON — A Bluefield male who pleaded guilty to murder and larceny Wednesday was right away sentenced to 25 many years in prison subsequent his admission in Mercer County Circuit Courtroom.
Christopher Wyatt Bailey, 29, entered the plea right before Decide Mark Wills. He was billed with the May possibly 4, 2019, shooting dying of William Lee Simons, 47, of Tazewell, Va.
Simons’ human body was discovered May possibly 5, 2019, around Dawson University Highway, which runs from Airport Highway to Littlesburg Street in the Brushfork space. He had been shot numerous periods, including two pictures in the arm and into the torso and one particular between the shoulder blades into the higher back again, in accordance to past reviews by West Virginia State Trooper R.L Jones.
Jones responded to the scene of the homicide soon after acquiring a contact about an deserted vehicle. Simons’ human body was located about 150 ft from the car or truck over an embankment.
Bailey was arrested May possibly 7, 2019, and charged with the murder.
All through a 2019 preliminary listening to, Trooper Jones testified that Simons appeared to have operate from the motor vehicle and “ran out of his flip-flops.” 8 discharged 9 mm rounds were being uncovered in just 10 feet of his system, and a 9 mm journal, folding knife and cellphone were being also identified close by.
It was later decided the cellphone belonged to Bailey.
Jones also testified that Simons’ pockets experienced been “turned inside of out,” which indicated a theft, and a blood-stained $100 monthly bill was located to have been invested by Bailey at an S&S Specific on the early morning of Could 5.
Bailey’s residence was subsequently searched and a Taurus 9 mm handgun was identified in his bed room.
Even though Bailey was indicted for murder in Oct 2019, he was observed not capable to stand trial all through a hearing in November of that yr.
All through that listening to, Mercer County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney David Pfeifer stated Bailey could get back competency and be brought again to court docket.
“We despatched him to a mental wellness facility to see if he can get back competency to stand trial,” Pfeiffer reported.
—-All through Wednesday’s listening to, Decide Wills questioned Bailey about his competency, inquiring if he had a record of mental illness.
“Yes, Your Honor,” Bailey replied. “Bipolar and paranoid schizophrenia.”
Wills requested if this impacted his plea.
“I do not reckon Your Honor,” Bailey responded.
Attired in orange prison garb, all visible elements of Bailey’s system — arms, encounter and palms — were lined in tattoos. He played with his handcuffs nervously for the duration of the hearing, and at moments rocked again and forth and clenched his palms into fists.
Soon after outlining the plea to Bailey, Wills requested him if he was guilty or not responsible.
“Responsible, Your Honor,” Bailey mentioned.
Immediately after signing courtroom paperwork, Bailey questioned Wills, “Your Honor, will I go home someday?”
“I are not able to remedy that,” Wills said.
Wills afterwards authorized Bailey to depart the courtroom to confer with his attorneys, Derrick Lefler and Monthly bill Huffman, about the plea and sentence.
Upon their return, Wills once again questioned Bailey if he nevertheless required to plead responsible to which Bailey replied, “Of course.”
Lefler informed Wills that despite the fact that Bailey experienced a mental well being prognosis, “These days he appears to be to be informed and with it.”
“He is able to comprehend and talk,” Lefler said. “Today he is in a posture to make decisions.”
In addition to the murder plea, Bailey also pleaded guilty to grand larceny. The charge stemmed from the theft of a Mercer County woman’s property for the duration of which he stole a tv, gaming program, 15 online games, fidget spinners, a silver wedding ceremony band and a pair of sneakers valued at $90.
At the summary of the listening to, Wills sentenced Bailey to 25 a long time in prison for 2nd-degree murder and one particular to 10 a long time for grand larceny, with the sentences to operate concurrently.
Bailey was also purchased to pay $1,735 in restitution to the theft target and court docket costs.
The point out was represented by Pfeifer and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Krista Ellison.
— Get in touch with Samantha Perry at [email protected]