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Cloud to plead guilty to Baker murder

Tuesday, Sep. 2 | By Steve
The Fauquier County Sheriff's Office says Ronald Richard Cloud, the suspect in a 30-year-old murder case, will plead guilty Thursday, and will likely be sentenced that day as well.

“The defendant has indicated through his attorney that he will decline a pre-sentence investigation into his background and be willing to be sentenced the same day as his plea,” Lt. James Hartman said in an email to media outlets Monday. “We will ask for a life sentence on the murder charge.”

Cloud's formal guilty plea is scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday in Fauquier County Circuit Court. He is charged with the Dec. 31, 1980, murder of Brad Baker at Baker's home on Kinloch Farm in The Plains.
The defense attorney tried to prevent a filmed interview of Cloud by Fauquier Sheriff's detective Donald Cahill purportedly showing Cloud admitting to Baker's murder from being shown in court.

While Hartman did not address the issue of the taped interview, he noted that the court granted prosecution motions this morning. “As a result of those motions being granted in a favorable manner to the Commonwealth, the defendant Mr. Ronald Cloud has tentatively decided (in front of the judge this morning) to plead guilty to the first degree murder of Brad Baker committed on December 31, 1980,” Hartman wrote.

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