By DAVE URBANSKI | July 20, 2022
A Virginia judge said Jacob “Alex” Meadows, following a plea hearing last week, smirked at the family of a high schooler he fatally shot in 2018 — and for that, the judge on Monday revoked Meadows’ bond, held him in contempt of court, and ordered Meadows jailed until his October sentencing, the Virginian-Pilot reported.
Meadows, 23, pleaded guilty July 11 to manslaughter and drug charges for the shooting death of Ocean Lakes High School student Christopher Ross during a drug deal, the paper said, adding that prosecutors in exchange agreed to drop murder and gun charges against Meadows and promised to seek no more than a seven-year prison term. However, Circuit Court Judge Steven Frucci determined Meadows smirked at and moved toward Ross’ family after last week’s plea hearing, the Virginian-Pilot reported, which angered the judge.
Christopher Ross’ older brother Robert testified that after the hearing, he and other family members were outside the courtroom when they saw Meadows passing by them in the hallway, the paper reported.
Ross said Meadows smirked as he approached, the Virginian-Pilot reported, adding that Ross was upset and accused Meadows of, ”walking up” on him. Ross’ family members then grabbed Ross and pulled him away, the paper said.
Meadows — who’d been out on bond for the last two-and-a-half years and had been allowed to remain free until sentencing — testified Monday he was happy when he left the courtroom but said it was because he could go home to be with his daughter, the paper reported. Meadows also said he didn’t intend to show any disrespect toward the Ross family, the paper added.
Frucci said courthouse hallway video shows Meadows did smirk and move toward Ross after last week’s hearing, the Virginian-Pilot said, adding that the judge also called Meadows’ actions “abhorrent” and “calculated.”
Frucci also told prosecutors they’d “have a hard time getting me to accept the [plea] deal” and recused himself from presiding over Meadows’ sentencing, the paper reported.
The Virginian-Pilot said Frucci presided over the plea deal hearing but added the deal wasn’t accepted at that time — and the new sentencing judge could reject it.
Christopher Ross on Dec. 11, 2018, went to Virginia Beach residence to buy a quarter-pound of marijuana for $400 from a teen who lived there, the paper said. Meadows supplied the marijuana to the teen and was present when Christopher Ross arrived, the paper said.
Ross lifted his shirt to display a gun tucked in his waistband, grabbed the marijuana, and ran, the paper said. Meadows, also armed, chased Ross and fired several shots, the paper said, adding that Ross was struck five times and died at the scene.