April 20, 2004
Contact: SA Heath Anderson
Phone Number: 202-305-8500
Richmond Man Indicted on Drug and Murder Charges
APR 20 -- A federal grand jury returned a superceding indictment today for Richard Dwight Bernard, age 35, of Jacksonville, Arkansas and Richmond, Virginia. Bernard was originally charged in November 2003, along with seven others, with conspiracy to distribute in excess of 1,000 kilograms of marijuana and with possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
In February 2004, the indictment was amended to add a charge alleging that Bernard, while engaging in the drug conspiracy, intentionally killed Anthony Rankine, Tasha Robinson, and Marquis Jobes, age 13, on October 22, 2003. In addition, the indictment charges Bernard with using a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking crime. Each charge involving the murders of Rankine, Robinson, and Jobes carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment and is death penalty eligible.
Announcing the indictment today were: Laura M. Nagel, Special Agent in Charge of DEA’s Washington Division; Paul J. McNulty, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; John P. Malone, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosive’s Washington Field Division; Susan M. Dukes, Special Agent in Charge of the IRS’s Criminal Division, Alexandria Field Office; Donald Thompson, Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Richmond Resident Office; and, Col. Carl Baker, Chief of the Chesterfield Police Department.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Olivia N. Hawkins and Charles E. James, Jr. are prosecuting the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The following agencies provided valuable assistance in this investigation: Chesterfield Police Department, Henrico Police Department, State Department, Bureau of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (BICE), Virginia State Police, Richmond Police Department, and the Virginia Capital Police.