Jury Recommends Sentence in Rashad Adkins Murder Case
For Immediate Release: January 27, 2017
On January 26, 2017, a jury convicted Rashad Adkins of two felonies relating to a murder that occurred in the 700 block of N. Fayette Street on July 2, 2015. Adkins was convicted of two counts: Murder in the Second Degree and Use of a Firearm in the Commission of Murder. The matter was prosecuted by Chief Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Molly Sullivan and Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Jessica Smith.
Today, the jury reconvened and recommended that Adkins serve the following sentence:
On Count One, Murder in the Second Degree: 40 years to serve in the penitentiary.
On Count Two, Use of a Firearm in the Commission of Murder: 3 years to serve in the penitentiary.
Under Virginia law, a jury is allowed to recommend a sentence to the Court. However, the judge presiding over the trial maintains the ultimate responsibility of sentencing the defendant. The judge will actually pronounce sentence at a hearing that is currently scheduled for . At this hearing, the judge will hear evidence and argument from the parties and may either accept or reduce the recommended sentence. The judge is not empowered to increase the sentence, however.
Commonwealth's Attorney Bryan Porter said: "By all accounts, the victim, Mr. Elliott-Tibbs, was a wonderful person who is dearly missed by his family and friends. I hope that the conviction obtained in this case brings some solace to those that loved him. My thoughts are prayers are with all those affected by this senseless tragedy, and I regret that it is not within my power to truly make this right."
Porter continued: "This conviction was obtained because courageous members of the community were willing to come forward, tell the truth and participate in a public trial. A murder is truly a crime against the community, and such cases require members of the community to come forward and assist my office in holding the perpetrator accountable. The day a community is willing to let such violence stand without a prosecution is the day violent felons feel free to act with impunity. Such a situation is untenable and would place our City in a state of moral peril. I therefore wholeheartedly thank those outstanding citizens who were willing to participate in the trial of this matter."
"Furthermore, I wish to thank the jury for their care and attention in deciding this important and emotionally charged case. I also commend the outstanding police work that brought this violent felon to justice. The Alexandria Police Department's Criminal Investigations Section was instrumental in the successful prosecution of this matter. The detectives' painstaking investigation allowed them to present my office with a very strong case that withstood the crucible of trial."
"Furthermore, I would be remiss if I did not commend the Sheriff and his deputies for their hard work in providing security so that the trial could proceed unimpeded and without interruption."
The defendant is incarcerated in the William G. Truesdale Alexandria Adult Detention Center pending the sentencing hearing.