Blankenship Plea: Attempted Capital Murder in Augusta County

STAUNTON, Va (WHSV)-- Ricky Blankenship was originally charged with attempted capital murder in Augusta County.

The Commonwealth's attorney said Blankenship pushed a state trooper onto I-81 after the trooper arrested him. But, that attempted capital murder charge was thrown out in court on June 30.

A big focus was on how the prosecution said Blankenship pulled him (the trooper saying quote "let's both die here right now.")

Instead of a jury trial, Blankenship pled guilty to three other charges. He was charged with attempting to escape, assaulting a trooper, and stealing license plates.

Attorneys said his car was on the side of I-81 in Augusta County. When he was approached, the Commonwealth's attorney said he was lying inside his car with beer cans on the floor.

"Hats off to them they do put their life on the line everyday. In the end, he apologized to the trooper for his stupidity, being drunk," said Rupen Shah, the chief deputy of the Commonwealth Attorney for Augusta County.

Both attorneys made a joint recommendation for five years in prison with Blankenship's history of mental illness. The other five years will be supervised probation.

He could be transferred to Georgia, which is where he is from.


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