Virginia man charged with abduction in teen's disappearance

RICHMOND, Virginia Tue Sep 24, 2013 7:36pm EDT

1 of 2. Randy Allen Taylor is shown in this undated handout provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation September 24, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/FBI/Handout via Reuters

Related Topics

RICHMOND, Virginia (Reuters) - A Virginia grand jury indicted a used car lot worker on Tuesday on charges of abducting a high school girl, in a case that has generated headlines nationwide.

Randy Taylor was indicted for the abduction in rural Nelson County of Alexis Murphy, 17, said Nelson County prosecutor Anthony Martin in a statement.

Murphy vanished on August 3 after leaving home, apparently to go shopping. She was last seen at a gas station.

Her disappearance has sparked extensive searches by the police, FBI, Nelson County authorities and hundreds of volunteers, including her high school classmates.

Taylor also had been a person of interest in the 2010 disappearance of Samantha Ann Clarke, 19, in Orange County, Virginia, county prosecutors said. Clarke is still missing.

In that case, police arrested Taylor and charged him with possession of a firearm. But the felony charge was thrown out, because police had no warrant when they placed a tracking device on his car.

In addition to abduction, the Nelson County grand jury indicted Taylor on an unrelated charge of possessing a stolen vehicle.

Taylor, 48, is to appear in court on October 23, when a trial date will be set. He had been held without bail in a regional jail, pending the grand jury's indictment.

(Reporting by Gary Robertson, Editing by Ian Simpson and Gunna Dickson)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (1)
billthomas56 wrote:
Mr. Taylor has been officially charged; the prosecution has shown a grand jury that they have enough evidence to bring him to trial. It is interesting to note that Mr. Taylor been only been charged with abduction so far in the Alexis Murphy case. My guess is that the stolen ATV is unrelated, and that FBI, Virginia State Police and Nelson County law enforcement will use the months between this indictment and any trial to build the strongest possible case against him in the abduction of Alexis Murphy.

I hope that law enforcement moves forward in the Alexis Murphy case with a balance of precision and an open mind. There are an awful lot of unsolved murders and disappearances in Central Virginia, and it is time to start solving them.

Bill Thomas
Brother of Cathleen Thomas
Colonial Parkway Murders

Sep 25, 2013 3:53pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.