NEW: Murder Defendant Appears In Court
If lawyers for a man charged in the Clover Hill convenience store murder want crime tips that came from outside Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, they’ll have to get them on their own. That’s the ruling from a judge during a hearing Thursday in Rockingham County Circuit Court.
Javon Lamont Arrington, 21, was arrested in Richmond on March 28 on six felony counts, including capital murder in the shooting death of Eun Sim Kim, 51, of Harrisonburg. She was killed Feb. 15 at the Dry River Store in Clover Hill, which she owned with her husband, 54-year-old Jae Young Kim. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in the case.
Arrington is accused of shooting Eun Sim Kim, 51, during an apparent robbery at the store. Her husband was severely beaten and shot during the attack. He has since been released from the University of Virginia Medical Center.
Arrington’s defense team, led by Arlington-based attorney Edward Ungvarsky of the Capital Defenders’ Office, filed a motion asking a judge to order Commonwealth’s Attorney Marsha Garst to retain and maintain all tips that have been submitted in the case.
Local police received more than a 100 tips during the six weeks Arrington was on the lam. It’s unclear what other jurisdiction received tips.
Garst opposed the motion.
“The position I would be put in is that I would be a witness,” Garst told Judge T.J. Wilson. “I’m not the custodian of records for Augusta County [or] Richmond.”
Wilson agreed and told the defense attorney that if he wanted to, he could submit subpoenas to police agencies if he wanted the information. Ungvarsky said he’d have to send out about eight subpoenas but was willing to do so.
The Kim family was in court for Thursday's proceeding. The family reopened the store last month.
Arrington is scheduled to return to court on Aug. 22. Attorneys told the judge they hope to set a trial date then.