Man indicted in 2001 murder

Published 10:39 pm Tuesday, February 12, 2013

A Suffolk man faces the death penalty if convicted on five counts for crimes that led to the murder of a federal witness.

Leroy Scott Jr., 49, was indicted on the crimes Tuesday by a federal grand jury. He is accused in relation to the murder of Junior Bivins Jr. on Nov. 20, 2001, in Suffolk.

The grand jury alleged that Scott conspired to prevent Bivins and others from testifying in a court proceeding related to the defendant’s drug distribution activities, weapons violations and other offenses, according to a press release from U.S. Attorney Neil H. MacBride’s office. Scott also wanted to retaliate against Bivins and others for providing information to law enforcement, according to the press release.

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Scott is charged with conspiracy, witness tampering, retaliation against federal witnesses and using a firearm resulting in the murder of a witness.

Bivins was shot in the front yard of his home in the Lake Kennedy area and died at the scene, according to information previously released in the case. He was free on bond awaiting sentencing in Norfolk federal court after pleading guilty to drug charges.

Two other witnesses were targeted as part of the same scheme, according to previous information. One was shot and stabbed in Hopewell, and another was shot in the face in Petersburg, both in the summer of 2001.

Another man, Michael Donnell Butts, 52, of Suffolk, is serving a sentence of five life terms for providing a firearm to the shooter and driving him to and from the scene.

Scott is scheduled to be arraigned on Feb. 15.