Murder suspect denied bond, found competent for trial

A Mechanicsville man who faces first degree murder in a Christmas Day incident will be back in Hanover General District Court later this month, giving the commonwealth’s attorney more time to review an autopsy report.

Keith Wood was charged with first degree murder in a Christmas Day incident.

Keith Wood was charged with first degree murder in a Christmas Day incident.

Keith M. Wood, 53, faces a preliminary trial March 25. Between now and then, the prosecutors plan to subpoena potential witnesses and review a recently completed autopsy report.

Wood appeared in court today after undergoing a psychological evaluation. His attorney, Michael Clower, told  Judge Hugh Campbell that the report showed his client could stand trial.

Wood is still being held at Pamunkey Regional Jail without bond and was denied bond once again at the Feb. 21 hearing.

Clower said during today’s hearing that Wood’s actions on Dec. 25 were out of self-defense.

On that day, at 8 .a.m., the Sheriff’s Office responded to Wood’s residence on the 8000 block of Peaks Road in Mechanicsville for a report of a person who was unresponsive. At Wood’s home, deputies found the victim, George A. Teal, 49, of the 8400 block of Lincoln Road in Mechanicsville, on the floor suffering from clear trauma.

Hanover Fire-EMS transported Teal to Memorial Regional Medical Center with serious life-threatening injuries. Teal was then transferred to VCU Medical Center, where he later died from his injuries.

A search warrant executed by the Sheriff’s Office, revealed that officers collected several items from Wood’s house including a white towel, grey shirt and hat with red stains as well as a 5-pound weight, box cutter and small scissors, among other household items.

Officers also found items from the victim, such as his wallet.

According to the warrant, Wood called the police stating that he needed help because he thought a “dead guy” was in his home.

The victim, Teal, was found lying on the floor of a workout room in the home, according to court documents. Wood told officers that he had asked Teal for help while he was doing a bench press, but that Teal put the barbell to his throat and then he passed out. Upon awakening, Wood said he found Teal’s body with fatal head and body injuries.

According to the search warrant, Wood told first responders at the scene that he and Teal were hanging out Christmas Eve playing on the computer, drinking alcohol and allegedly smoking marijuana.

Posted on Friday, February 21, 2014 at 12:37 pm