Randy Taylor Indicted on First-Degree Murder Charges
The suspect in the disappearance of Nelson County teen Alexis Murphy is now charged with her murder. Nelson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Anthony Martin announced the new charges - including first-degree murder - against 48-year-old Randy Allen Taylor Monday morning.Martin held a press conference on the case Monday, just hours before Taylor appeared in court, where he announced that Taylor would be served with new indictments that day in Nelson County Circuit Court.
Martin ordered a special grand jury to hear evidence against Taylor in the August 3 disappearance of Alexis. Last Thursday, that grand jury indicted Taylor on four charges. The new charges include:
- First-degree murder of Alexis Murphy.
- First-degree felony murder of Alexis Murphy, i.e. murder of Alexis Murphy during the commission of abduction.
- Abduction of Alexis Murphy with intent to defile (judge nolle prossed Taylor's original felony abduction charge)
- Another unrelated grand larceny charge.
"The return of indictments only means that the grand jury found that probable cause exists for the charges I mentioned and that Randy Taylor should go on trial for those charges. The defendant is presumed to be innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt,” said Martin.
Martin would not say what evidence prompted these new charges citing a gag order put in place last month. No body has been found.
The defense asked for the trial on all new charges to be held at the original trial date, scheduled for February, but the judge denied that motion. Taylor's jury trial on the first-degree and felony murder charges as well as abduction with intent to defile is now scheduled for two weeks starting May 1. The prosecutor says he needs that time waiting for lab work and analysis results. Taylor will have a hearing on the grand larceny charge on May 27. This will be a separate bench trial since the charge is unrelated to the Murphy case.
Alexis left her home in Shipman Saturday, August 3 - reportedly heading toward Lynchburg. Surveillance video shows her at the Liberty gas station in Lovingston around 7:15 that night. That was the last time she was seen. Authorities arrested Randy Allen Taylor, 48, on Sunday, August 11, and charged him with felony abduction in relation to the case. For more, click here.
We asked Taylor if he had anything to say as deputies let him out of court. He responded, "No, but I'm taking interviews at the jail."
Taylor's next court appearance is scheduled for February 7 at 2 p.m. for a motions hearing in Nelson County Circuit Court.
Nelson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Press Release
On August 3, 2013, 17 year old Alexis Murphy of Shipman, VA went missing.
The Nelson County Sheriff’s Office, the Virginia State Police & the FBI launched a joint investigation which resulted in the arrest of Randy Allen Taylor who was charged with the abduction of Alexis Murphy on August 11.
Taylor was subsequently charged in November 2013 with larceny of a 4-wheeler which was unrelated to the Alexis Murphy case.
Both of those matters are currently scheduled for trials next month in the Nelson County Circuit Court.
In the meantime, a special grand jury was impaneled at my request to hear evidence and to consider indictments that I prepared regarding the Alexis Murphy case.
After the evidence was presented to the special grand jury last Thursday, Jan. 2, Randy Allen Taylor has been indicted on the following offenses:
· First degree murder of Alexis Murphy.
· First degree felony murder, i.e. Murder of Alexis Murphy during the commission of abduction;
· Abduction of Alexis Murphy with intent to defile; and
· Another unrelated grand larceny charge.
The return of indictments only means that the grand jury found that probable cause exists for the charges I mentioned and that Randy Taylor should go on trial for those charges.
The defendant is presumed to be innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
The defendant will appear in the circuit court this afternoon at 3:00 p.m. Where he will be served with the new indictments.
That is all that I am able to state at this time until the hearing this afternoon.