Appeals court upholds convictions in assault
Published 4:54 pm Tuesday, August 23, 2022
The Virginia Court of Appeals has upheld the February 2020 conviction of a Virginia Beach man convicted of attempted capital murder and other charges stemming from an assault the previous year in Suffolk against his estranged wife.
The man, Timothy Wayne Carr, was also found guilty in Suffolk Circuit Court of felony aggravated malicious wounding, armed burglary, possession of burglary tools, object sexual penetration, abduction with the intent to defile, strangulation and wounding another person in the commission of a felony. He was sentenced to 26 years in prison during a June 17, 2021 emotional hearing in circuit court.
Carr had challenged all but one of the convictions — strangulation and wounding another person in the commission of a felony.
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According to the Aug. 23 unpublished memorandum opinion of Judge Stuart A. Raphael, Carr said he had only acted in the heat of passion, ruling out malice, and that the evidence was not sufficient to convict him. However, the Court of Appeals ruling notes that “the evidence sufficed to allow the factfinder to conclude that Carr’s actions were planned and premeditated, not spontaneous or without conscious reflection.”
The appeals court ruling noted that Carr had told the woman that he had “prayed on this s – – -,” and had been “contemplating on this s – – – all week.”
“The brutality and duration of Carr’s attack also supports malice,” the appeals court ruling stated.
Carr had also claimed that the armed-burglary and burglary-tools convictions should be overturned because he couldn’t break into a home he claimed to share with his estranged wife, “but the evidence showed that Carr knew that he had no right to enter her house,” saying he had no “legal or proprietary interest in her home, … titled exclusively in her name,” and that they were separated for a year and she had made it clear he was not welcome there.
The trial judge also found the woman’s testimony credible, saying “I believe her 1,000 percent,” and finding Carr’s denials not credible. The appeals court also said Carr’s argument that the evidence failed to show “abduction with an intent to defile” or proved strangulation “meritless.”
The appeals court said that “because none of Carr’s arguments has merit, we see no basis to set aside any of his convictions.”
The night of the assault, late in the evening of July 3 and early July 4, 2019, Carr had driven from Virginia Beach to the woman’s home on Holbrook Arch in Suffolk and parked around the corner, using a ladder and getting pruning shears from the shed as he spied on the woman through her second-story window.
According to statements made during the sentencing hearing in circuit court, Carr got enraged when he saw the woman sitting on the bed and texting someone, and had assumed it was another man. He kicked in the back door, assaulting the woman for about an hour — punching her, choking her and more — leaving her with multiple injuries, including a broken arm, broken teeth and palette and sexually assaulting her. A sexual assault nurse examiner had testified that the woman had physical trauma to her face, head and body, and she can expect to have future cognitive impairment due to the loss of oxygen to her brain while she was being strangled.
She tried to escape, but Carr caught up to her twice and “brutally attacked” her more, the appeals court ruling stated, before she later passed out on the floor.
In that ruling, it noted that Carr got enraged after seeing her texting a photo of herself to someone who he believed to be a romantic interest of hers. He then tried to get into the house through the second-floor window, the ruling stated, but he fell off a ladder while trying to cut through a window screen on the second floor and subsequently tried to get in the house from the first floor.
When he couldn’t do that, he broke through the back door with the shears in his hand and unplugged all but one of the security cameras, disarmed the alarm and ripped the telephone cord from the wall.
During trial, an audio recording of the entire crime played, as Carr had turned on a recording device in his pocket. He confronted the woman and attacked her for the next hour.
Carr, who had worked as a former security assistant at Bayside High School and as a girls’ basketball coach at Salem High School, both in Virginia Beach, had several people testify on his behalf during the sentencing hearing. However, prosecutors in the case argued that Carr did not appear remorseful after the crime, worried that it would “tarnish his reputation,” captured on the audio recording even as the woman he had assaulted was still on the floor suffering.
Suffolk Circuit Court Judge L. Wayne Farmer said Carr had put the woman through the pain of a trial instead of taking responsibility for his crimes.
Note: An unpublished opinion describes a court decision that is not available to cite as precedent, as the court deems the case to not have sufficient precedential value.