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Stoneman indicted for wounding officer

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By Staff Reports

WYTHEVILLE — A local man who was sought earlier this year in connection with the malicious wounding of a Wythe County deputy was indicted by a grand jury on July 21 in Wythe County Circuit Court.

Cheston Stoneman, 32, of Hillsville, was apprehended by police on May 7, at a residence off of Joy Ranch Road. He was arrested on warrants from Wythe County for the malicious wounding of Deputy Zach Puckett on April 27. He was also served with warrants from Carroll County for probation violations for six previous felony convictions.

The grand jury indictments included an assault charge in the malicious injury of a law enforcement officer, and an obstruction of justice charge.

An indictment is a formal charge, not a finding of guilt.

Wythe County deputies received a report at 1:40 a.m. on April 27, regarding trespassers who had built a fire in a Max Meadows location near the New River.

When deputies arrived, they approached a group of people near the fire, and a man — identified as Stoneman — made a run for the river.

Puckett confronted Stoneman, and Stoneman allegedly slashed at the officer, cutting his hand. He then jumped into the river. Members of the Carroll County Sheriff’s office, Virginia State Police and the Wythe County Sheriff’s office were involved in Stoneman’s capture 11 days later.

Stoneman’s next court date is Oct 7, according to court records.