Randy Taylor denied bond in Alexis Murphy case

Randy Allen Taylor. Photo: FBI Richmond Division. Randy Allen Taylor. Photo: FBI Richmond Division.

Alexis Murphy’s suspected abductor will remain in jail ahead of a grand jury proceeding scheduled for next month.

Randy Allen Taylor, arrested on abduction charges August 11, was denied bond by Nelson County Judge A. Ellen White in a hearing in Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Thursday, according to reports in the Daily Progress, NBC29, and Richmond’s WTVR6. Taylor, 48, waived his right to a preliminary hearing, which will speed the case to a grand jury September 26.

Police charged Taylor with abducting 17-year-old Murphy, who has been missing since leaving her Shipman home August 3 to go shopping. Murphy’s car was later found in a Charlottesville parking lot, and Taylor’s Charlottesville-based court-appointed lawyer, Michael Hallahan, told reporters police arrested his client after a search of a camper on Taylor’s Lovingston property turned up one of Murphy’s hairs.

Hallahan says his client doesn’t deny Murphy was there, but says she left in the company of an African-American male in his 20s after the young man sold Taylor pot.

Police have not said they’re investigating Taylor’s version of events, but WTVR Richmond reported earlier this week that the Louisa County Sheriff’s Office confirmed it had pulled over a car matching a description given by Taylor.

Part of Thursday’s proceedings were closed to the public because of the court’s concern over possibly poisoning a future jury pool, and because of high level of media interest in the case, The Progress reported. In arguing against granting him bond, Nelson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Anthony Martin said Taylor presented a flight risk, pointing to his earlier failures to appear in court following other charges, including a 2005 arson charge, for which he still owed restitution, according to reports.