Murder charge filed in death of Vietnam veteran in Va.
HAMPTON ROADS, Va. — A Chesapeake, Va. man was arraigned this morning on a charge he murdered a 77-year-old Vietnam veteran last year near the Hampton Roads Executive Airport.
On Tuesday, police charged Kyle Langreder, 23, with one count of first-degree murder in connection with the Sept. 27 attack on Charles Silva.
So far, Langreder — who has been incarcerated at the Chesapeake Correctional Center on lesser charges since mid-October — is the only individual charged in connection with Silva's death.
Kelly O'Sullivan, a police spokesman, said detectives hope to file additional charges against the other men involved in the fatal melee. The investigation is still open.
John W. Jelich III, Landgreder's defense attorney, said police appear to be waiting for the medical examiner to file a final autopsy report.
"Once the autopsy is complete, I think we will know as far as other charges," said Jelich. "We are sort of just waiting and seeing."
A preliminary autopsy report has been completed, prosecutors have said. It indicates Silva died Oct. 24 as a result of complications from blunt force trauma to the head.
According to police, Silva was attacked Sept. 27 while working on a tractor near the airport at 5172 W. Military Hwy. An avid hunter who had permission to be on the property, he was getting the area ready for deer season.
Following the assault, Silva was able to walk. He initially went to an outpatient treatment center in Suffolk. From there, he was transferred to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where he lost consciousness. He died almost a month later.
While still lucid, Silva told friends he was assaulted after telling several young men they were trespassing and could not ride their all-terrain vehicles in the area. He said they initially left, but returned, according to one of the friends.
Silva was armed with a rifle during the argument. He even fired the gun. Prosecutors have said one of the attackers disarmed Silva and beat him with the weapon.
During the hearing this morning, prosecutors dropped malicious wounding by mob charges that had been pending against Langreder since October.
A preliminary hearing on the murder charge is set for March 18 in Chesapeake General District Court.