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Virginia Sheriffs’ Association
The Voice of Virginia’s Sheriffs & Deputies

The Winchester Star — October 12, 2017

Homicide suspect Joshua Clyde Newill’s freedom ended at the barrel of Frederick County Sheriff Lenny Millholland’s pistol at about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Millholland said in a Wednesday email that Newill was lying in the back of his 2002 Chevrolet Suburban when he was arrested at gunpoint. Lt. Warren Gosnell and Deputy Austin Stump assisted in the arrest.

A 12-gauge shotgun, believed to have been used in the Friday killing of Claude Eugene Triplett in Bunker Hill, W.Va., was seized from the Suburban, Millholland said. Stump spotted the Suburban in the Walmart parking lot off of Northwestern Pike (U.S. 50.) The Suburban had previously been spotted at a Martin’s in Stephens City, but was gone when deputies arrived, according to a news release from Sgt. J.D. Burkhart, West Virginia State Police Martinsburg barracks commander.

Triplett, 46, was a Winchester resident and father of three, according to his obituary. Triplett was shot in the chest at about 11:55 a.m. inside a home at 200 Manicure Lane, where Newill’s mother lives, according to a criminal complaint written by Cpl. Nick Campbell, a West Virginia state trooper.

Newill’s girlfriend, Lisa Carlson, wrote that he killed Triplett after she told him Triplett tried to rape her. Carlson said she awoke late Thursday or early Friday morning to find Triplett standing in her bedroom.

Jenne Newill, who is listed in the obituary as Newill’s sister, escorted Triplett out of the home. However, Carlson said he returned to the premises and masturbated on the front lawn before Jenne Newill again escorted him away.

After she told him about the incident, Carlson said Newill drove to his mother’s home. Witness Holly Palerno said she was standing on the porch of 200 Manicure Lane when she saw Newill approaching while carrying a shotgun. She asked him if everything was OK and he told her no.

“During that time, Joshua Newill walked past her and entered the front of 200 Manicure Lane subsequently pointing the firearm at Claude Triplett,” Campbell wrote. “Holly Palerno said she heard Joshua Newill state, ‘So, you want to break into my house?’ At that time, Holly Palerno grabbed her child and fled off the porch at which time she heard one single gunshot.”

Palerno said as she walked east on Manicure Lane, Newill drove up to her. Palerno said Newill told her, “I am not going to hurt you, Holly, but I just shot Trip.”

Campbell said in an interview that Newill’s criminal history includes convictions for eluding police, drunken driving and driving with a revoked license, but he has no convictions related to violence. Newill, 29, of the 100 block of Jason Way in Bunker Hill, was being held without bond at the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center on Wednesday night pending extradition to Berkeley County, W.Va.

Campbell said Triplett and the Newills aren’t related, but said Newill’s mother told him she considered Triplett a family member.

Paul Triplett, Triplett’s brother, posted Friday on Facebook that he was shocked by the killing.

“You read about these things in the paper [and] you see them on the news, but you never think it’s going to happen to you,” he wrote. “My brother was senselessly murdered today for no reason. We had our differences, but I love You Trip. R.I.P brother.”

— Contact Evan Goodenow at [email protected]