Parkesburg robbery suspect faces Virginia murder charge

car_doorThe man who allegedly robbed a Parkesburg dollar store at gunpoint earlier this week was arrested on capital murder charges Tuesday in Virginia, ending an alleged crime spree that spanned several states and claimed the life of an elderly man.

Richard Clay Smith, 47, was arrested by the Virginia State Police during a traffic stop in Page County on Tuesday afternoon. The arrest concluded a multi-state crime spree that included several armed robberies and the shooting death of Smith’s 80-year-old former father-in-law in Augusta County. Smith faces a variety of criminal charges in Virginia’s Augusta, Page and Rockingham counties.

On Tuesday the Parkesburg Police Department released a composite sketch depicting a suspect who robbed the Family Dollar store in the 100 block of West First Avenue on Sunday afternoon. Police officials warned the public that the suspect was considered armed and extremely dangerous after the crime was linked to similar ones in New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia.

Smith’s arrest concluded a large-scale regional manhunt by the Virginia State Police, the U.S. Marshal Service, the FBI, and several county sheriff’s offices in Virginia.

Smith and his sister, Laura Lee Williams, are both facing murder charges in the late-August fatal shooting of 80-year-old Richard Orebaugh, Smith’s former father in law. Smith’s girlfriend, 32-year-old Andrea Mullen, was also connected to an Aug. 24 robbery in Virginia, according to law enforcement officials. On Monday Mullen was arrested while on the run in New Jersey.

Smith is currently in a Virginia jail, law enforcement officials said. There was no word on whether he would be returned to Chester County to answer to local charges.

Read on the Daily Local News →


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