Retired Virginia police officer sentenced in deaths of wife and stepdaughter

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A retired Virginia police officer has been sentenced to 150 years in prison for killing his estranged wife and stepdaughter and firing gunshots at law enforcement officers.

Richard Colon Crowder of Henrico was sentenced Friday in Henrico County Circuit Court.

Diane Crowder was moving her belongings out of the couple’s home and stepdaughter Carrie Szaksz was helping her in July 2022. While moving company employees were upstairs, Crowder shot the women multiple times outside the home, according to court records. Richard Crowder then barricaded himself inside the home and fired shots that struck two Henrico County police vehicles.

Crowder pleaded guilty in February to two counts of first-degree murder and entered an Alford plea to the attempted murder of two officers. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but recognizes there may be enough evidence for a conviction.

Richard Crowder had retired in 2014 from the Henrico County police department.

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