Virginia Parole Board denies parole request for Stephen Epperly, Pulaski County officials say

New River Valley News

PULASKI COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — On Friday afternoon, Pulaski County officials announced that the Virginia Parole Board denied the latest parole request for Stephen Epperly, who was convicted for the 1980 murder of Gina Renee Hall.

Hall was a Radford University freshman when she was killed on June 28, 1980.

Investigators say on the night of her murder, she had gone to the Blacksburg Marriott Lounge, putting her in the path of Epperly.

According Virginia State Police, Hall left the lounge with Epperly, but whether or not she left with him willingly is still in question.

Police also indicate that Hall went to a house around Claytor Lake. There, she called her sister Diana from the lake house. Investigators say that during the call, Hall mentioned that she was with a man named Steve.

This was Hall’s last call, but it marked the start of the search to find her.

Hall’s death marked Virginia’s first no-body conviction.

Members of the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office for Pulaski County spoke with the Virginia Parole Board back in May about Epperly’s potential parole release.

On Friday, July 16, though, Pulaski County Commonwealth’s Attorney Justin Griffith sent the following statement to WFXR News:

I was notified at 1:46 p.m. today that the Virginia Parole Board has denied this latest parole request for Stephen Epperly. Pulaski County justice continues to stand. Over forty years ago, a jury of his peers recommended he spend the rest of life in prison and today is one step closer to making sure that happens. Mr. Epperly should know by now that as long as I am in office, we will meet him at the gates of parole with a visceral objection. The continued efforts by Gina Hall’s family to make sure she is never forgotten is truly remarkable. We will stand with them any day. The justice that Everett Shockley fought so hard to achieve should never ever be diluted by Stephen Epperly’s release.  I am sure Richmond will give him another bid at parole and I am [expletive] sure we will be ready to fight that one as well. 

Justin L. Griffith, Commonwealth’s Attorney for Pulaski County

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