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Hear about one of Ken’s most difficult murder trials – and how it can help you today

By Beth Gibson on December 13, 2019

Ken Gibson began his legal career taking on violent criminals in court, both as a federal prosecutor at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., and as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Norfolk, Virginia. That extensive courtroom experience is invaluable when GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys go to trial in personal injury claims today.

Ken talks about one of his most difficult criminal cases:

Ken: “A case that stands out to me was one I handled as a prosecutor in Norfolk, Virginia. A young man had been murdered by two of his friends. They had been involved in a burglary with the victim, and they believed he had ratted on them to the police. They strangled him and dumped his body in a wooded area. So the prosecution I handled was the prosecution of his two friends—if you can call them that.”

What was it like to work with the victim’s family?

Ken: “He [the victim] was just 17 years old. And for me as a young prosecutor at the time, it really was a challenge to handle dealing with the family of this young man, and the grief and trauma they went through—helping them through the process, educating them on what to expect.”

What happened with the accused individuals?

Ken: “Both of the young men [accused] were fighting these charges. There were expert witnesses involved. The jury trial itself was about a week long.

“One of the murderers eventually turned on the defendant who was on trial. I had to meet with this person who had been involved in the murder of a 17-year-old young man; so I didn’t have a personal like for this person, but at the same time, I had to work with him so that he could be a witness against the defendant.”

What were some of the challenges?

Ken: “It was a hard-fought case. We wanted to outwork the defense. That meant working hard to locate the witnesses we needed, to spend the time with the witnesses to get them ready for trial, and to work with our experts so they could make a good presentation to the jury.

“One of the things that we wanted to do was to use technology—visual technology—through PowerPoint, and video, and graphics. Juries today want that. They call it the CSI effect. Jurors are accustomed to seeing videos, demonstrative evidence, presentations on screen. So if you don’t deliver that, you’re gonna have a hard time in a trial.

“We put together a pretty effective visual presentation for the closing argument that I think made the difference in the case.”

What was the outcome?

Ken: “Fortunately, we won the trial, and it was such a relief to meet with the family afterwards. Although the guilty verdict itself didn’t end their grief and trauma, it did help them feel a sense of justice, that there was some vindication, and that there was accountability.

“Both of the young men who were involved with that murder were held accountable. They’re still in prison today.”

This sad-but-true story demonstrates the compassion Ken has for victims and their families, a quality he maintains after transitioning to personal injury law. The desire to help others in their time of need is something he shares with his partner, John Singleton, and it is a cornerstone of their practice.

If you or loved one has suffered injury due to the negligence of another party, you deserve compensation, and Ken and John would like to help. For a free case evaluation, call GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys at (804) 413-6777.

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Community service

Prevention, empathy, and diligence are hallmarks of everything we do at GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys. Our community can see these ideals lived out in our work to prevent personal injuries from happening.

  • Safety Education
    GibsonSingleton launches a “Texts=Wrecks” campaign to reduce the number of people injured or killed by distracted drivers.
  • Annual Coat Drive
    During the fall, our team works to distribute coats to people in need in our community.
  • Hands-on Service
    John and Ken join the Gloucester Point Rotary Club in cleaning up the community.
  • Supporting Local Schools
    The Gibson family participates in Gloucester’s Botetourt Elementary Shuffle fundraiser.