Man sentenced for 2015 hammer attack on Leesburg retail worker

A former Virginia man will spend the rest of his life in prison for attacking a retail store employee with a hammer in 2015.

Judge James Fisher sentenced Bradford Cellucci, 28, to life in prison after prosecutors said he attacked Bryan Pedroza, who was 18 at the time, at the Ralph Lauren Polo store at the Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets.

Pedroza was walking Cellucci to a fitting room when prosecutors said Cellucci struck him in the neck.

“The claw end of the hammer made an impact with the side of the victim’s neck, causing puncture wounds. After striking the victim, the suspect fled the store and ran toward the parking lot, leaving the hammer behind,” said Leesburg police officer Michael Drogin.

Pedroza was paralyzed from the mid-torso down as a result of the attack, Drogin said. He also has limited use of his arms and hands.

Using video surveillance and DNA they found on the hammer left at the scene, officers tracked Cellucci to Texas in 2018, and charged him with aggravated malicious wounding.

Earlier this year, Cellucci entered an Alford plea to the charge.

Megan Cloherty

WTOP Investigative Reporter Megan Cloherty primarily covers breaking news, crime and courts.

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