York-Poquoson judge refuses to dismiss charges in possible road rage shooting

Contact Reporterjoreyes@dailypress.com
Judge both denies, grants motions in hearing for man accused in possible road rage shooting from June

A York-Poquoson Circuit Court judge denied most of the requests made on behalf of a man accused of shooting two people while driving near the York County-Williamsburg border in June, including a request to dismiss several charges against him.

At a hearing Thursday, Circuit Court Judge Richard Rizk granted a defense attorney permission to access information on witnesses in the case to help build a defense for Jonathan Ray McDonald, 29, of Spotsylvania.

The attorney, Patricia Palmer Nagel, also submitted a request for information about a former York-Poquoson deputy who led investigation of the shooting case. Nagel said the investigator, Debra Wentzel, no longer works for the Sheriff's Office "due, in part, to issues involving her credibility."

Rizk didn't rule on that request Thursday.

The shooting occurred June 4 on Old Mooretown Road, according to the York-Poquoson Sheriff's Office. The Sheriff's Office said the shooting was possibly related to road rage and injured two people who were riding in a vehicle.

A woman who was shot in the head was flown to the Medical College of Virginia Hospital in Richmond, Sheriff's Office spokesman Lt. Dennis Ivey said. A man who was hit on his left eyebrow was driven to the Medical College of Virginia Hospital by York County medics, Ivey said. Neither person died from their injuries.

After authorities received a tip on Facebook, McDonald was arrested on June 8 in his home in Spotsylvania. He is charged with two counts each of aggravated malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and one count each of shooting from a vehicle, maliciously shooting at an occupied vehicle, felony hit and run and destruction of property, according to court records.

The next hearing in the case is scheduled for 9 a.m. Feb. 28.

Copyright © 2018, The Virginia Gazette