Hadsell murder charges explained: Deliberate and accidental

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is getting new information about what appears to be conflicting charges filed against Wesley Hadsell for the murder of his stepdaughter, AJ Hadsell.

A grand jury indicted Wesley on charges of first- and second-degree murder in the death of the 18-year-old.

She disappeared from Norfolk in March 2015. Her body was found a month later in a ditch in Southampton County.

One charge says the murder was deliberate and premeditated, the second charge says it was accidental.

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10 On Your Side reached out to a respected local lawyer for clarification.

Peter Decker III, of the Decker Law Firm in Norfolk, said the two different charges give prosecutors a better chance of getting one or both convictions.

In other words, if they can’t get the more serious charge of first-degree murder to stick, they might get the other.  

Decker also stated that even though it’s the same murder, they are different charges, so there’s no double jeopardy.

Hadsell is also charged with concealing a body. He is currently serving time on federal gun charges and is being held in the Northern Neck Regional Jail.

10 On Your Side is still waiting to hear back from the feds and the Southampton Commonwealth’s Attorney about when he will be transferred and charged with AJ’s murder.

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