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Deputy cleared
Wreck involved pedestrian who walked into road

Thursday, May 1, 2014

A Henry County sheriff’s deputy has been cleared of any wrongdoing related to a November pedestrian fatality, according to Roanoke Commonwealth’s Attorney Donald Caldwell.

According to a previous Bulletin report, Oliver Chester Rumley, 49, of Collinsville, died Nov. 21 when he stepped in front of a sheriff’s office vehicle driven by Deputy J.B. Stone.

Caldwell, who was appointed to investigate the incident, said that “based on these facts, no criminal charges are appropriate in this matter.”

Stone did not have time to react when Rumley stepped in front of his vehicle, Caldwell said.

Also, Caldwell said, toxicology results indicated that Rumley’s blood alcohol content was 0.38 at the time of the incident, “which of course is extremely intoxicated. I believe this would explain his failure to note an oncoming vehicle.”

According to the previous Bulletin report, Stone was placed on paid administrative leave after the incident, which Henry County Sheriff Lane Perry said is the standard procedure in such cases.

Perry said Tuesday that Caldwell has since “returned to his normal duties.”

“We are still remembering the Rumley family as well, in thought and in prayer,” Perry added.

Stone was responding to a call that an intoxicated pedestrian was knocking on doors of homes near the Meadowgreen Market area on U.S. 220 before the accident occurred. Rumley later was determined to have been the pedestrian in question.

Shortly after the incident, Virginia State Police Trooper C.A. Weidhaas said that Stone was “traveling northbound on U.S. 220 in the lefthand lane when a black male dressed in all black walked out into the left lane” in front of the deputy’s 2011 Ford Crown Victoria Interceptor. He added that the man was wearing blue jeans and a black jacket.

Stone attempted to swerve to avoid Rumley but could not, Weidhaas said at the time. Rumley was struck at 10:23 p.m. and was pronounced dead at the scene at 10:40 p.m.


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