Just days after getting his high school diploma, a 17-year-old Wythe County resident has been charged as an adult in the Sunday night slaying of a 19-year-old Rural Retreat man.
Arrested on Monday, William Greg Akers III, of Rural Retreat, is being held without bond on charges of first-degree murder and using a firearm in commission of a felony in the shooting death of Matthew Blake King.
According to Wythe County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Anthony Cline, deputies were called to Rural Retreat’s Spirit Convenience Store, 6862 W. Lee Highway, across from the Dutch Pantry, around midnight and found King lying in the parking lot, dead from a gunshot wound to the head.
Cline said Akers ran away, but deputies found him near the scene and took him into custody without incident.
When officers arrived, four witnesses were at the scene, but deputies are looking for others who were there at the time of the shooting.
“We have to track them all down to find out what the motive was,” the major said. “We have to hear everyone’s story.”
Cline said that Akers and King were in the parking lot for a pre-arranged meeting. He said there may have been some anger between the two men, but investigators are still searching for a motive for the homicide.
Akers graduated from Rural Retreat High School on Thursday and turns 18 on Sunday. Until then, he is being held in a juvenile detention center. After he turns 18, he will be moved to the New River Valley Regional Jail, Cline said.
King is a 2018 RRHS graduate.
The Wythe County Sheriff’s Office was assisted in this case by the Virginia State Police and the Rural Retreat Police Department.