The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
No break for teen in mom’s murder
BY KEITH EPPS
A Stafford County teenager’s attempt to reduce the 48-year active sentence she got for killing her mother was rejected Monday.Ashleigh Nicole Dye, 18, returned to the same Stafford courtroom in which Circuit Judge Sarah Deneke sentenced her June 4 for the “savage and cold-blooded” slaying of her mother, Brenda Dye.
Ashleigh Dye’s attorney, Terence Patton, filed a motion requesting a hearing in which he could present new evidence in hopes of getting a lesser sentence.
Deneke ruled Monday that such a hearing is not merited and that her initial judgement stands.
Ashleigh Dye was a few months shy of 18 on July 5, 2011, when she shot and killed her 62-year-old mother at the family home on Perry Road.
Brenda Dye was shot in the face and the chest with a 12-gauge shotgun and was stabbed multiple times. She had been dead about four hours when her husband and son came home that evening and found her.
The investigation quickly revealed that Ashleigh Dye and her boyfriend at the time, Eddie Chewning, planned the murder, and Dye carried it out.
Dye pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and using a firearm in the commission of a felony and was sentenced to a total of 68 years in prison with 20 years suspended.
Chewning has been convicted of being an accessory to both first-degree murder and using a firearm in the commission of a felony. His sentencing is set for Sept. 20, and he faces up to life in prison.
Patton Monday pointed out that Deneke’s sentence far exceeded the recommended state sentencing guidelines, which called for a maximum penalty of 35 years and three months in prison.
But prosecutors Michael Hardiman and Ed Lustig pointed out that Deneke was well within the law, since first-degree murder carries a maximum penalty of life in prison.
Evidence presented at trial showed that Dye and Chewning had been dating about four months when they hatched the sinister “Plan KBM,” which stood for Plan Kill Bitch Mom.
Dye testified that she went along with the plan only after Chewning threatened to break up with her if she didn’t.
She said they’d talked about it for months, but got serious July 4 after an argument with Brenda Dye about going to see fireworks.
Chewning and Dye exchanged numerous text messages before and after the slaying, including one in which Chewning wrote, “stop talking about the [expletive] and just do it.”
Chewning was working with Dye’s father and brother that day and was with them just before they discovered the body.
Ashleigh Dye went to McDonald’s and ate half a fish sandwich after the slaying. She then went to her job at Best Buy.
Dye had no prior criminal record.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404