New Kent Charles City Chronicle

News for New Kent County and Charles City County, Virginia | May 18, 2024

Local News

Mechanicsville man receives year in jail for hit and run in New Kent, kicking Virginia State Trooper

By Andre Jones | May 13, 2024 9:04 pm

A Mechanicsville man who operated a vehicle under the influence and fled the scene of an accident in New Kent will spend a year in jail. John Alexander Wells, 20, of the 9100 block of Minglewood Drive, entered guilty pleas to one count each of assault on a law enforcement officer, felony hit and run, misdemeanor driving under the influence after illegally consuming alcohol, and misdemeanor contributing to the delinquency of a Misdemeanor charges of obstruction of justice, providing a false identification to a law enforcement officer, and destruction of property were dropped as part of the agreement. In a…
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Revised $112.8 million proposed New Kent budget now sees two-cent tax hike, down from seven cents

By Andre Jones | May 13, 2024 8:49 pm

After hearing community mumbles from the public about a possible seven-cent increase, New Kent County Administrator Rodney Hathaway returned to county leaders with a new budget that drastically reduces the tax hike. Hathaway proposed a new budget of $112,844,288 for FY2024-25 operations in New Kent County at the May 6 regular board meeting and public hearing. The new proposed real estate rate would be 59 cents per $100 of assessed value, down from the original 64 cents per $100 of assessed value. With the county’s equalized rate sitting at 57 cents per $100 of assessed value, the tax increase would…
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Three indicted in Charles City Circuit Court

By Andre Jones | May 7, 2024 12:15 pm

Three individuals were indicted by a grand jury as part of Tuesday morning proceedings in Charles City Circuit Court: –Antonio Pierre Green, 37, of the 300 block of Brown Street, Petersburg, on a solo charge or possession of a weapon by a violent felon. The offense allegedly took place on Dec. 25, 2023. –Rayshawn Long, 38, of the 400 block of Cox Landing, Newport News, on one count each of possession of a gun by a nonviolent felon, misdemeanor assault and battery on a family member, and misdemeanor destruction of property. The offenses allegedly took place on Feb. 9. –Shauntae…
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North Carolina man receives three life sentences for having sex with New Kent minor

By Andre Jones | May 6, 2024 9:12 pm

*Editor’s Note: This story may contain content that some readers may find disturbing. A North Carolina man who traveled to New Kent and had sex with an underage girl will spend the rest of his life in prison. Jose Joan Martinez Marmolejo, 27, of Fayetteville, received three mandatory life sentences plus an additional 60 years of incarceration during Monday morning sentencing in New Kent Circuit Court. During a February trial, Marmolejo was found guilty of 16 charges by a jury. At the trial, it was discovered that in Jan. 2022, Marmolejo had started having conversations with the victim through an…
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Charles City woman killed in New Kent motor vehicle accident

By Community Member | May 3, 2024 12:23 pm

The Virginia State Police is investing an accident in New Kent that claimed the life of a Charles City woman. According to a press release, shortly after 4 p.m. on May 2, Virginia State Police responded to a two-vehicle crash at the 3800 block of Pocahontas Trail in New Kent. The report says that a 2012 Chrysler Town and Country was traveling eastbound when it struck a 2013 Chevrolet Cruz in the rear. The Chrysler vehicle ran off the road to the left and struck several trees. The driver of the Chrysler, identified as E. Marie Butler Austin, 66, was…
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Former Cumberland Hospital Director cleared of wrong-doing involving sexual acts with minors

By Andre Jones | April 30, 2024 8:23 pm

A week-long trial that involved a former doctor of Cumberland Hospital for Children and Adolescents in New Kent County has resulted in not guilty verdicts. Daniel Davidow was found not guilty on two counts each of indecent acts with a child by a custodian and sexual penetration with an object stemming from alleged incidents in 2018 to 2019. The trial revolved around allegations that Davidow had committed acts against minors at the troubled hospital. As the trial played out, the defendant testified that he did not recall any of the accused events. However, he resigned in 2019 after being notified…
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Exchange student guilty of reckless driving in New Kent, felony eluding charge pending

By Andre Jones | April 29, 2024 9:22 pm

An exchange student who resides in Williamsburg will have a year to prove that he can obey American traffic laws. Xichen Shen, 21, of the 1400 block of Glynn Springs Drive, was found guilty on one count of reckless driving during a Monday afternoon contested trial in New Kent Circuit Court. One charge of felony eluding remains pending. On Jan. 4, New Kent Deputy Jeremy Deaton was conducting patrol on Interstate 64 eastbound when a black vehicle entered his radar at 96 miles per hour in a posted 70 miles per hour zone. Deaton testified that he pulled behind the…
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Text amendments pave way for possible construction of data centers in Charles City

By Robb Johnson | April 28, 2024 11:24 pm

A change in text amendments and language through a joint meeting between Charles City’s Planning Commission and Charles City’s Board of Supervisors has paved a way for the possibility of data centers to be created in the county. Supervisors voted 3-0 to add text amendments that would allow the creation of data centers in light industrial, heavy industrial, and planned industrial park district following the Apr. 23 regular board meeting. According to Charles City Director of Community Development Gary Mitchell, the county has received inquiries from various firms about the creation of data centers in the county. The text amendments…
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New Kent High School principal charged with having alcohol on school grounds

By Community Member | April 23, 2024 8:21 pm

The principal of New Kent High School has been placed on administrative leave after being charged with having alcohol on school grounds. According to a press release from New Kent County Sheriff’s Office, an investigation was conducted on school grounds by a staff member. During the investigation, it was determined that alcohol was allegedly located in the vehicle belonging to Christopher Valdrighi, which was parked on school grounds at the time. Conducting an interview with the suspect, Valdrighi did not have any alcohol on his person. Valdrighi was charged with a Class 2 misdemeanor of having alcohol on school grounds…
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New Kent’s School Board approves revised FY2024-25 budget of $50.5 million

By Andre Jones | April 16, 2024 1:00 am

New Kent’s School Board approved a revised budget that topped more than $50 million for the FY2024-25 school year. School members voted 4-0 to approve a revised budget of $50,596,117 for operations for the next fiscal year. District 4 representative Ron Vaught was not present at the meeting. In March, Superintendent of Schools Brian Nichols recommended an amount of $51,145,884. That figure was presented to the county’s board of supervisors, with New Kent County Administrator recommending $1 million less for the school systems. After additional dialogue was conducted at their annual budget retreat, the final figure was reached. In Nichols’…
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