Christopher Allman strolled into the Russell County Circuit courtroom in shackles and chains…and said nothing to circuit judge Vernon Miniard.
“We’ll waive formal arraignment…enter a plea of not guilty to all charges on the indictment,” Allman’s public defender told the judge during the short arraignment Tuesday morning in Jamestown.
Police say Allman didn’t just kill the pregnant mother of three, he kidnapped her, strangled her…and left her body under a tree. It could qualify the case for the death penalty.
“We’re looking seriously at that,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Matthew Leveridge.
Yet the prosecutor says it’s too early to know if a jury could have that capital punishment option.
“There’s some lab reports that I need to talk to the lab folks about, the autopsy is not final yet. I’d like to look at that or at least talk to the medical examiner,” said Leveridge.
The murder has obviously been very difficult for Sarah Hart’s family and close friends to deal with. But they hope an event next month will turn a terrible tragedy into a tremendous opportunity and benefit for this community.
August 11th is the date for “Run With all your Hart,” a run/walk with proceeds for area students.
“We’re not thinking about the suspect, we are focusing on Sarah and her life and family and trying to get past that and on to the healing process,” said Stephanie Foley, one of the events’ organizers.
Foley says the run walk will co-exist with concerts, children’s events and other family focused activities.
“I think it’s bringing healing to the family and community, and to other communities. We’ve seen an outpouring of love and support,” she said.
Allman will be back in court on August 28th.