Jury begins deliberating in Alexander Hill Jr. murder trial

PETERSBURG, Va. (WRIC) — Jurors are deciding the fate of accused quadruple murder suspect Alexander Hill Jr. in Petersburg.

Jurors received the case after prosecutors and the defense made their closing arguments Thursday morning. Hill is accused of murdering four members of the same family in 2014.

The prosecution wrapped up their case Wednesday after calling nearly 45 witnesses to testify. Former Commonwealth’s Attorney Cassandra Conover told 8News “they left no stone unturned.”

This case began April 19, 2014 when the bodies of Pauline Wilkins,Vicki Chavis-Ansar, Tanique Chavis and 2-year-old Delvari Chavis were found inside a burning home on Harding Street. Two were stabbed to death, the others died from smoke inhalation.

The suspect, Alexander Hill Jr. was on the run for over a year before U.S Marshalls found him in New York.

In court, the prosecution had witnesses from all across the country to give jurors a timeline of the events.

Witnesses testified seeing Hill at a Waffle House in Weldon, North Carolina around 4 a.m. on April 20th.

When recalling the encounter, employee Kathy Wallace testified in court she remembered the man she spoke to as having “the most unusual hazel eyes I have ever seen.”

The man, she identified as the defendant, asked where the nearest bus station was. When Wallace said Emporia, Virginia was the only one open at that hour, Hill said he “wasn’t going back to Virginia.”

Wallace offered to have a friend of hers, Thomas Walton, tdrive him to the bus station in Rocky Mounty, N.C.

In court, Wallace testified that, “to me, he smelled like kerosene and smoke.”

Thomas Walton, who drove Hill to the bus station, said Hill told him he was going to Mississippi to see family. Walton also testified that he smelled like kerosene and gas.

From the bus station in Rocky Mount, N.C., Hill ended up in Buffalo, N.Y. where missionary workers said they knew him as ‘Trent Dales’ and he lived in a homeless shelter there for four months.

Edward Hudson, from St. Luke’s Mission of Mercy, said the first time he met ‘Trent Dales’ was in late December 2014. Hudson said ‘Trent Dales’ stayed at the men’s shelter, Lazarus House Ministries, until his capture in April 2015.

U.S. Marshall Scott Baryeza testified when Hill was taken into custody, he threatened officers to “fight them” if they removed his handcuffs to fingerprint him.

Hill was then transported to the Federal Courthouse where officers had him fully restrained on the ground and had to force the finger printing process by forcibly un-clenching Hill’s fists.

Back in court on Wednesday, expert witnesses testified that DNA found on a knife in the home and on a bloodied t-shirt could be that of Alexander Hill Jr.

The defense claims that the forensic scientists were trying to “make the evidence fit” when comparing it to Hill’s DNA.

On Thursday, the defense will call a few more witnesses. They will not say Hill plans to testify.

Closing arguments should be Thursday afternoon, then leaving this case in the hands of the jury.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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