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Man convicted of four felonies

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A Richmond man was convicted of four felonies Friday for injuring two men with a Mason jar during a wild incident early Dec. 22 at a Fredericksburg motel.

Warren Travis Hovermale, 36, was found guilty in Fredericksburg Circuit Court of two counts of unlawful wounding and two counts of wounding in the commission of a felony.

Judge Gordon Willis’ decision angered at least one of Hovermale’s supporters, who angrily approached prosecutor Kevin Gross after the verdict.

That man was quickly intercepted by Deputy Robbie Wilson, who reprimanded the man and sent him out of the courtroom.

The man was outside the city courthouse a short time later flashing his middle finger.

The December incident took place at the Hospitality House at 2801 Plank Road. A Christmas party that featured lots of drinking was in progress at the time.

None of the witnesses who took the stand Friday were sure what started the fight, but most of them saw Roberto Vazquez and Douglas Phillips Jr. on the ground bleeding in the aftermath.

Vazquez was unconscious at the scene and still doesn’t remember being hit.

He testified that he was having fun at the party one minute and woke up in the hospital the next.

Phillips tackled Hovermale after seeing him hovering over his co-worker. He also had a gash on his head, but wasn’t as seriously hurt as Vazquez.

No one reported actually seeing Hovermale hit Vazquez, but saw him standing over the fallen victim.

In a lengthy taped interview with Detective Carlos Reyes, Hovermale repeatedly said he was attacked and didn’t remember hitting anyone.

Defense attorney Charlotte Bridges argued that the evidence was insufficient and suggested that another man was a more likely suspect.

“What you have here is a drunken brawl in which nobody really knows what happened,” she said.

Gross agreed that the scene was chaotic, but said Hovermale’s guilt was clear.

Hovermale, who has a prior voluntary manslaughter conviction, will be sentenced Oct. 8.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404

kepps@freelancestar.com

 

 

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