The grand jury handing the case in the death of Taylor Behl returned an indictment today against Ben Fawley. Ben Fawley today was charged with first-degree murder in the death of Taylor Behl.
Fawley, a 38-year-old amateur photographer, had admitted to a role in Behl’s death. Behl, 17, a freshman from Northern Virginia, was last seen Sept. 5. Her decomposed remains were discovered Oct. 5 in rural Mathews County, which is in eastern Virginia.
Man indicted on charge of murdering VCU student Behl
The county commonwealth’s attorney, Jack Gill, said Fawley was indicted on a first-degree murder charge. “I don’t want to go into any of the evidence in the case,” he told reporters outside the courthouse.
The indictment accuses Fawley of killing Behl in a premeditated act and “in the commission of, or attempt to commit, rape, forcible sodomy or abduction.”
Taylor Behl’s mother, Janet Pelasara, was in the court room at the announcement of the indictment. Janet Pelasara also commented on the indictment handed down today.
Reached by phone today, Behl’s mother, Janet Pelasara, told The Associated Press she was pleased with the first-degree murder charge — though it meant Fawley wouldn’t face the death penalty. “
The death penalty would be too quick, too easy, too painless,” she said. “He needs to be put through the pain and … the horridness that he put my daughter through. “When he gets to prison, maybe that will happen.”
Taylor Behl’s mom, Janet Pelasara, never at a loss for words when it comes to the venom that she has for the man that has allegedly killed her daughter also made the following comment:
Janet Pelasara said this is a message to Ben “I think Ben will know his spiraling down to the depths of hell has just begun.”
Pelasara came to the courthouse in case she was needed to testify before the Grand Jury. She also said she came “as a voice for my daughter.”
A Judge has placed a Gag Order on witnesses in Behl case according to the Washington Post. This would prohibit any witnesses from publicly discussing their testimony in front of the grand jury that is investigating the death of Taylor Behl.
A Richmond judge has signed a gag order that bars witnesses from publicly discussing any testimony they give to a special grand jury investigating the death of college student Taylor Marie Behl, officials said yesterday.
The order was signed Monday by the judge presiding over the multi-jurisdictional grand jury, which is expected to convene again this morning in Richmond Circuit Court. Grand jury witnesses are generally allowed to discuss their testimony if they wish to.
Police chief, Rodney D. Monroe, requested the a gag order after he became concerned when information about the police investigation was leaked to the media last week, ‘Police Told Death an Accident, Lawyer Says’.
Benjamin Fawley is reported to have told police that Taylor Behl died accidentally while they were having a sexual encounter, according to an attorney representing Behl’s mother. Taylor Behl’s mother Janet Pelasara was quick to respond to such statements.
“Let’s be clear — Ben Fawley murdered my daughter,” Janet Pelasara said during a hastily arranged news conference outside her attorney’s McLean office. “His claim that it was accidental is just one more perversion of the truth in his ever-changing web of lies.”
Fawley told investigators that he had consensual sex with Behl in her car parked near a beach in rural Mathews County, Va., the night of Sept. 5 and that he accidentally choked her, according to George O. Peterson, Pelasara’s attorney. Fawley also told police he panicked after Behl died and dumped her body in a ravine, the paper reported.
Pelasara called Fawley “a big, fat liar” and said she was speaking for the 17-year-old daughter she buried Friday.
“He had a dark side, and Taylor wasn’t a dark side kind of girl.”
“It is apparent that my daughter died a violent and unspeakable death at the hands of Ben Fawley that night and was not a willing participant,” Pelasara said.