RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The man accused of killing Virginia State Police Special Agent Michael Walter appeared in Richmond Circuit Court for a pretrial motions hearing Thursday morning.
Most of the discussion focused on deciding a next hearing date and a speedy trial.
During Thursday’s hearing, which lasted more than an hour, the judge said she’d like to set a trial date within the year, giving both sides ample amount of time to set motion dates leading up to the trial.
Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney Mike Herring said the judge plans to ‘hold their feet to the fire,’ and both sides are working around the clock to develop a strong case.
“We have to gather evidence to prove or meet the statutory aggregator standard, so we have to prove either future danger to society or that the circumstances of the crime are sufficiently vile,” Herring said.
Ball’s family also attended for support. His family pastor, Sharon Broaddus, said her ‘heart is with the family’ at this time.
“This is a family as well so we have to respect their privacy and the pain that they’re going through, too,” she said.
Ball is also charged with one count of malicious wounding, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
State Police believe Ball shot Special Agent Walter during a traffic incident in Mosby Court back in May. Ball fled the scene and was arrested after an overnight manhunt.
Walter was rushed to the hospital where he later died of his injuries. He leaves behind his wife and three children. Walter was also known in the Powhatan community as a wrestling coach dedicated to bettering the lives of local kids.
If convicted, Ball could face the death penalty. His next court appearance will be July 25 at 9 a.m.
Stay with 8News as we continue to follow this developing story.