There will be no parole for Stephen Epperly.
That was the word received earlier today by Pulaski County Commonwealth’s Attorney Justin Griffith.
Griffith said he was notified at 1:46 p.m. Friday that the Virginia Parole Board had denied this latest parole request for Epperly.
“Pulaski County justice continues to stand,” Griffith said in a news release. “Over forty years ago, a jury of his peers recommended he spend the rest of life in prison and today is one step closer to making sure that happens. Mr. Epperly should know by now that as long as I am in office, we will meet him at the gates of parole with a visceral objection.”
Griffith said the continued efforts by Gina Hall’s family to “make sure she is never forgotten are truly remarkable.”
“We will stand with them any day. The justice that Everett Shockley (former Commonwealth’s Attorney who prosecuted Epperly) fought so hard to achieve should never ever be diluted by Epperly’s release. I am sure Richmond will give him another bid at parole and I am damn sure we will be ready to fight that one as well,” remarked Griffith.
In early December of 1980, Epperly was found guilty of first-degree murder, becoming the first person in Virginia to be convicted of first-degree murder in a case in which there was no body, confession or eye-witness.
Epperly, 28 at the time was sentenced to life in prison in the precedent-setting case.
As for Hall, her body to this day has not been found.