VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – A judge certified felony charges against the man accused of killing a Virginia Beach mother in August.

43-year-old Gary Morton is facing felony gun possession and abduction charges, as well as two ancillary misdemeanors, in Virginia Beach. This comes after a judge in Norfolk last month certified charges of second-degree murder and use of a firearm.

Morton is accused of killing 40-year-old Marie Darshaun Covington in August 2022. He was arrested and taken into custody following a police chase that began in Chesapeake and ended in Norfolk.

Carla Convington, Marie Covington’s daughter, testified that she witnessed Morton and Marie arguing at her home on Thalia Trace Drive. Carla said Morton, who does not live in the home, allegedly yelled for Marie to take him to Norfolk.

Carla said Morton then grabbed a gun off a dresser, along with a bag of his belongings and the two left the home. She said she and her sister watched from the home as Morton hit Covington from the driver’s seat.

Carla said her mother tried to get out of the car, opening the door and putting down one foot. Before she could get out, Morton reversed the car, hitting a car parked behind them, and speeding off. Carla said she called police the next day after her mother didn’t show up to work.

A detective also testified on Thursday and said that Morton claimed the couple was shot at while driving on I-264 the day Marie went missing. Morton told detectives that he returned fire at the unknown car and that he accidentally shot Marie in the head.

According to the detective, Morton said he drove around for a few hours before dumping her body in the garbage by an abandoned building in Norfolk. The detective said Morton then drove to Pittsburgh, before returning to the area days later.

On Aug. 20, Morton led state police on a high speed chase while driving Covington’s SUV. The chase ended in Chesapeake. Police recovered Covington’s cell phone, two concealed semi-automatic handguns, and a bottle of alcohol.

Covington’s daughter had reached out to 10 On Your Side while her mother was missing, saying that police weren’t doing anything.

Morton’s trial in Virginia Beach is set for April 19.

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