New Kent Charles City Chronicle

News for New Kent County and Charles City County, Virginia | April 14, 2024

Judge, CA step aside in case

By Alan Chamberlain | June 24, 2010 9:38 am

New Kent’s commonwealth’s attorney’s office as well as the regular judge on the county circuit court bench are stepping aside in the case involving a former New Kent deputy sheriff accused of embezzlement.

Commonwealth’s attorney Linwood Gregory announced in court on June 14 that Holly Smith from Williamsburg-James City is taking over prosecution duties in the case involving E. Todd Landrum. Judge Thomas B. Hoover, meanwhile, said a substitute judge would be brought in to hear the case. Hoover scheduled a July 19 hearing to confirm the new judge’s appointment as well as set a trial date.

Landrum, 35, of 9724 Royerton Drive in Henrico County, is charged with one count of embezzlement in connection with close to $1,000 in unauthorized gasoline purchases he allegedly made over several months using a sheriff’s office credit card.

Sheriff F.W. “Wakie” Howard Jr. confronted Landrum in April concerning the matter after an internal investigation revealed discrepancies. Howard said Landrum readily admitted making the purchases. The sheriff fired Landrum on April 20.

Landrum first joined the New Kent force in 2002 and remained with the department until 2007 when he resigned to accept a job in Chicago. Last July, he returned to New Kent and was rehired as a deputy. The alleged embezzlement took place during his second stint as a deputy.

Last week in court, Landrum requested a court-appointed attorney, indicating he did not have money for hiring a private lawyer. Landrum said he recently had been hired as an assistant manager at a Dollar General Store at a pay rate of $12 per hour, but added he does not own a house or motor vehicle and pays child support for two children.

Hoover cited the child support payments in granting Landrum’s request, and appointed Todd Duval to represent the defendant. Duval said he expects the trial to be heard by a judge and not involve a jury.

Landrum, meanwhile, remains free on $5,000 bond. If convicted, he could receive up to 20 years in prison.