James Hunter Stallard killed his ex-girlfriend, 44-year-old Crystal Hannah, last June 2022.
James Hunter Stallard, a man from Elliston was found guilty of fatally strangling his ex-girlfriend. A Montgomery County jury charged him with first-degree murder on Thursday.
According to The Roanoke Times, the jury has found James Hunter Stallard guilty of first-degree murder in the death of his ex-girlfriend. James Hunter Stallard also pleaded guilty of hiding the body of his ex-girlfriend.
James Hunter Stallard, who is set for sentencing on November 8, faces life imprisonment on the first conviction and up to five years on the second. During the closing statement of Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Chris Obenshain, he revisited the timeline that led to Crystal Hannah’s Death.
On June 5, 2022, Hannah visited James Hunter Stallard at his home. The couple was seeing each other on and off for several years. James believed that Hannah was cheating on him, so he took her phone and discovered “all of his worst fears,” according to James’ attorney.
Dr. Amy Tharp, the one who performed Hannah’s autopsy, said the cause of her death was strangulation.
James Hunter Stallard and Crystal Hannah got into a heated argument that lasted for 30 minutes before becoming physical. Stallard has told the police that he punched Hannah in the face four or five times. When Hannah was pushed to the ground, James Hunter Stallard put his hands on her neck and strangled her. After she died, Stallard put the dead body of his ex-girlfriend in a car and drove to the nearby woods where he dumped her body and covered it with sticks and leaves.
After deliberating for almost three hours, Montgomery County Jury charged James Hunter Stallard of first-degree murder.