5 held in connection with disappearance, death of Virginia police officer
WAYNESBORO, Va. — Kevin Quick, a Virginia auxiliary police captain who went missing a week ago, is dead, authorities said Friday afternoon.
Waynesboro Police Chief Michael Wilhelm reported the 45-year-old’s death at a Friday afternoon news conference.
Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corrine Geller said that authorities have not positively identified a body found Thursday, but “due to the time that is now transpired since” Quick went missing and his vehicle being found, authorities now consider this case a “death investigation” rather than a missing-person case.
Five people total have been arrested in connection with Quick’s disappearance and death.
Three of them — 22-year-old Gert Wright, 49-year-old Leslie Hope Casterlow and 31-year-old Anthony Stokes, Jr. — were taken into custody without incident Thursday night “without incident,” the state police said. All three are being held without bond at the Henricho County Jail on felony charges of being “a principal in the second degree” to murder and of gang participation.
Authorities previously announced that they’d arrested three siblings Tuesday night at a hotel in the Washington suburb of Alexandria, Virginia.
Daniel Mathis and his sister, Mersadies Shelton, have been charged with grand larceny in the theft of Quick’s 1999 Toyota 4Runner. A second sister, Shantai Shelton — who has not yet charged directly in Quick’s case — was picked up on an outstanding warrant from Louisa County, east of Charlottesville, where Sunday night’s armed robbery took place, Geller said earlier this week.
The 18-year-old Mathis also was charged with robbery, malicious wounding and a variety of weapons-related charges in connection with the Sunday-night robbery, but no details of that holdup were released.
Last seen by family one week ago
In 1990, Quick joined his father in the reserve arm of the Waynesboro, Virginia, police department — members of which aren’t paid but hold ranks, have badges and carry firearms like full-timers.
He rose up the ranks while working paying day jobs, including the past 15 years as a production coordinator for the synthetic fabrics company Invista. His position there was eliminated in what Waynesboro police Sgt. Brian Edwards called an “amicable” separation.
The morning of Friday, January 31, he’d taken his mother — with whom he was living in Afton — out to breakfast at a local Cracker Barrel. That meal was the last time Quick’s credit card was used, according to Edwards.
He’d also spent that day prepping for his brother’s surprise birthday celebration, including getting the venue and music in order.
Quick had been legally separated from his wife since 2007, but their divorce was not final, Edwards said. He said another woman gave birth to Quick’s daughter four months ago, and he was headed to their home in neighboring Albemarle County at the time he disappeared.
According to an affidavit, Quick texted his child’s mother, saying he was on the way. His phone has been turned off since last Friday night.
In fact, he was last seen about 10:15 p.m. that night leaving the Afton, Virginia, home that he shared with his mother. Authorities said his family believed the officer was off duty at the time and heading to a friend’s house in neighboring Albemarle County about 20 miles away.
But he never made it there.
Never showed up for family birthday party
His family reported him missing the following day, after Quick failed to show up for the birthday party for his brother that he’d planned.
His 4Runner was captured by surveillance cameras at automatic teller machines twice. The first time was in the town of Fork Union, about 50 miles from Afton, about 11:40 Friday night; the second was in Manassas, on the outskirts of Washington, on Saturday night, Geller said.
Each time, the same two people were in the picture, she said — but authorities haven’t said which, if any, of those arrested were in the image.
The SUV turned up parked under a carport in Mineral, more than 30 miles northeast of Fork Union, on Monday.
Investigators probing Quick’s case came upon a man’s body shortly before noon Thursday in a wooded area in Virginia’s Goochland County.
That body was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Richmond to undergo an autopsy and positively identify its remains.
Such a positive identification hadn’t happened as of late Friday afternoon. Still, authorities gathered for that day’s press conference — including Waynesboro’s police chief and many of his former colleagues — left no doubt that they believe Quick was dead.