A third teen charged in connection with a July 3 slaying outside a North Stafford convenience store is now being tried as an adult.

Christopher Walters Jr., 16, was indicted Monday by a Stafford grand jury on a charge of being an accessory after the fact of homicide. The Class 6 felony carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

Walters is one of three teens charged as adults in connection with the death of 20-year-old Troy Barnett, who was shot in the head and killed outside the 5 Twelve store on Garrisonville Road.

Laura Guadalulpe Gomez–De La Cruz, who was with Barnett that night, was also shot in the head and remains seriously injured.

Caine C. Davis and Rustam Fardin, both 17, were also arrested in connection with Barnett’s slaying and both face multiple charges, including first-degree murder.

Davis, the accused shooter, has a five-day jury trial scheduled to start Feb. 10 in Stafford Circuit Court. Fardin, who is accused of driving Davis and Walters to the shooting scene, has a seven-day trial scheduled to start March 16.

Walters testified against both codefendants in closed juvenile court hearings and is expected to testify again at their trials. Court records show that Walters, who is represented by attorney Terence Patton, is scheduled to enter a guilty plea on Jan. 23.

In a bond hearing last month, prosecutor Alexandria Vakos called Fardin the “driving force” behind the slaying and claimed he and Davis have been tied to two robberies that occurred prior to Barnett’s death. Barnett was the victim in one of those robberies.

Vakos said during the hearing that Barnett stopped selling drugs to the suspects after the robbery. This angered the suspects enough to hatch a plan that included enlisting a girl to call Barnett to set up a drug purchase, the prosecution has claimed.

The girl was still in Maryland when Barnett arrived at a McDonald’s to meet her, and he went to the 5 Twelve store after the girl didn’t show. He and Gomez–De La Cruz were ambushed after coming out of the store, according to the evidence.

In his preliminary hearing testimony, Walters admitted being with Davis and Fardin that night, but claimed he did not know about the planned killing. He said he was in the car when the slaying occurred and didn’t see or hear anything.

Prosecutors have not said what Walters is accused of doing after the slaying that led to the accessory charge.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404


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