A man who was already serving a 38-year prison term for the 2015 slaying of Heather Ciccone was ordered Wednesday to serve just under 13 additional years.

Joshua Christopher Williams, 30, was sentenced in Spotsylvania Circuit Court to a total of 12 years and 11 months in prison. Combined with the time he got for his first degree murder conviction in December 2017, Williams now has nearly 51 years of prison time.

He was sentenced Wednesday on a perjury conviction and three probation violations. The perjury charge stems from Williams' attempt to concoct a phony alibi during his murder trial from a phone in the Rappahannock Regional Jail. The probation violations stemmed from prior escape and drug convictions.

The 21-year-old Ciccone was shot in the back of the head in a driveway on Piney Branch Road in Spotsylvania on Dec. 6, 2015. A lengthy investigation resulted in the arrests of Williams and Jonathan J. Vejarano. Vejarano is serving a life sentence for his role in the slaying.

According to the evidence presented during both lengthy trials, Ciccone was killed as the result of her involvement in a love triangle that included Williams, a planned marijuana deal and Vejarano's desire to join a local gang.

The prosecution claimed that Williams offered Vejarano membership into his gang, the G-Shyne Blood, and a large amount of marijuana in exchange for carrying out a hit on Ciccone. Prosecutors argued that Williams wanted Ciccone dead in part because his baby's mother, Danielle Long, convinced him that Ciccone was working against him as a drug informant. There was no evidence indicating that the claim was true.

Wednesday's hearing, which lasted several hours, included testimony from a Spotsylvania detective and correctional officers at the regional jail mostly about Williams' extensive gang history. A detective testified that his gang ties date back to his days at Chancellor High School, when he was expelled for wounding another student in a dispute over some tennis shoes.

Jail officials testified about discussions they overheard between Williams and other inmates about witnesses who snitched against Williams, referring to them as "hotboys." There was talk of such witnesses getting shot in the head and lighting certain people on fire "since they want to be hot."

Prosecutor Ryan Mehaffey urged Judge Michael McKenney to give Williams every year he could.

"Removing Mr. Williams from society is really the only appropriate remedy," Mehaffey said. "Why in the world would we ever let Mr. Williams go free again?"

Defense attorney Clifford Clapp, who repeatedly objected to testimony regarding Williams' gang affiliation, said Williams' murder conviction does not mean he should receive the maximum penalties for the violations.

"He's already been sentenced for the murder," Clapp said. "Mr. Mehaffey is seeking a second bite at the apple."

McKenney could have added at least another 12 years to Williams' prison time had he chosen to do so.

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Keith Epps: 540/374-5404


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