FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 27, 2015
Contact: Heather F. Williamson
Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office
20 East Market Street
Leesburg, VA 20176-2809
SPRADLING PLEADS GUILTY IN 2013 STERLING HOMICIDE
LENGTHY HISTORY OF DOMESTIC ABUSE REVEALED IN INVESTIGATION
LEESBURG, Virginia – October 26, 2015. Rosangela Spradling, 45, appeared before the Circuit Court of Loudoun County, in custody, and entered Alford pleas of guilty to voluntary manslaughter, shooting in the commission of a felony, and two counts of discharging a firearm in an occupied dwelling **.
On May 17, 2013, Spradling shot and killed her husband, in their home in Sterling, Virginia. At the time of the shooting, Mr. Spradling was employed as a police officer with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police Department. Through the course of the investigation by Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office detectives, it was determined that there had been a lengthy history of law enforcement contact with the Spradling family for calls related to domestic disputes. These calls for service documented the behavior of Mr. Spradling as aggressive, uncooperative, argumentative and belligerent and were often associated with his severe alcohol abuse.
Shortly before the shooting, the Spradlings were involved in a physical altercation wherein Mrs. Spradling was on the floor being strangled by Mr. Spradling. When the children entered the room, Mrs. Spradling was released from his grip. She subsequently retrieved his firearm and shot him. Mr. Spradling died at the home.
“While it is natural to be sympathetic to one that has suffered years of abuse, it doesn’t absolve someone of accountability for a homicide, in this case manslaughter,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Plowman. “If you find that someone you know is in an abusive relationship, please encourage them to seek immediate help.”
If you or someone you know is the victim of domestic violence or is involved in an abusive relationship, you are encouraged to seek help by contacting the Victim & Witness Assistance Program at (703) 777-0417, or the Domestic Abuse Response Team (DART) at (703) 777-0207. Additional services and assistance are also available through the Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter (LAWS) at (703) 771-7845 or http://lcsj.org/.
Mrs. Spradling is currently being held without bond in the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center where she awaits her final sentencing hearing on November 16, 2015 at 9:00 a.m. in Loudoun Circuit Court. Spradling faces up to 25 years in prison.
**Pursuant to Alford v. North Carolina, an Alford plea is one where the defendant maintains their innocence, but enters a guilty plea because he believes it to be in their best interest rather than proceeding to trial.