Virginia Briefing

Man Pleads Guilty in Fatal Shootings; Metro Board Approves Budget; Quarantines Placed on Fire Ant-Infested Areas

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Friday, June 26, 2009

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY

Man Pleads Guilty in Three Fatal Shootings

A Prince William County man pleaded guilty yesterday to the shooting deaths of three people in 2007, but prosecutors said they would not seek the death penalty.

Anastacio Sanchez Miranda, 41, shot and killed two men and a woman inside a Woodbridge house Dec. 9, 2007, after he went there looking for his children's mother, whom he suspected of infidelity, according to police testimony. He also shot and wounded two others, police said.

The victims were Rosario Europa Martinez, 24, Juan Manuel Guevara Rios, 28, and Gerardo Lopez Garcia, 25. Prince William Commonwealth's Attorney Paul B. Ebert said he was not seeking the death penalty because the victims' relatives did not want it.

Sanchez Miranda pleaded guilty to numerous charges in Prince William County Circuit Court, including capital and first-degree murder, aggravated malicious wounding and the use of a firearm during a felony.

-- Jonathan Mummolo

METRO

$2.1 Billion Transit Agency Budget Approved

The Metro board yesterday approved a $2.1 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins Wednesday, with $1.4 billion in operating funds and $740 million for capital spending.

The transit agency had faced a $154 million budget gap this year because of rising operating costs and shrinking non-passenger revenues such as rental and interest income. Metro officials plugged the hole by making $81 million in internal cuts, including eliminating 313 positions, tapping a reserve fund, increasing local government subsidies and cutting about $3 million in bus service in Maryland and Virginia.

After a series of public hearings about service changes that would have affected 72 bus routes, only about a dozen routes will change, beginning Sunday.


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