David Dewayne Scott, age 44 of Big Stone Gap, entered a plea of guilty today to all counts of an Indictment against him in the Wise County Circuit Court. He admitted guilt to various weapons charges including possession of a weapon by a violent felon, stealing the firearm, brandishing the weapon, recklessly handling the gun, and discharging it in an occupied dwelling. Scott further pled guilty to resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. He offered his plea without an agreement from the Commonwealth's Attorney's office, meaning a judge will determine his sentence after listening to the testimony of witnesses from prosecutors and the defendant at a sentencing hearing.
On March 30, 2019, Scott, a convicted violent felon, stole a firearm from a vehicle parked at 1803 Lenora Road in Big Stone Gap. Shortly thereafter he pointed the firearm at his sister and then shot through a window at a residence. Scott then fled the home and entered the wooded area near the Mountain Empire Community College campus, pursued by officers from Big Stone Gap, the Wise County Sheriff's Office, and the College itself. His proximity to the college resulted in its temporary closure, evacuation, and lockdown. He was eventually arrested on campus. Scott later admitted that he was under the influence of drugs.
Assistant Commonwealth's Attorneys Dan Fast and Sarah Childress successfully prosecuted the case.
Commonwealth's Attorney Chuck Slemp said, "This frightening incident was every police officer's nightmare: a violent felon, under the influence of heroin and other drugs, deranged for unknown reasons, armed with a loaded firearm and headed for a college campus. We are so grateful to the officers of the Big Stone Gap Police Department, Wise County Sheriff's Office and campus police at Mountain Empire Community College for their quick and professional response. I also want to commend the good work of our prosecution team for securing these convictions."
A sentencing hearing in the case is now scheduled for January 7, 2020. Scott faces up to 39 years behind bars as total possible maximum punishment.