Police link 3 homicides in Dinwiddie, Chesterfield

Herbert C. Bland Jr.,
Herbert C. Bland Jr.,
Herbert Bland, Sr.
Herbert Bland, Sr.

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A double homicide in Chesterfield and a third homicide in Dinwiddie appear to be the work of one man, according to Chesterfield police.

Herbert C. Bland Jr., 23, is a suspect in the deaths of his father, his ex-girlfriend and her mother, according to investigators.

Investigators believe Bland Jr. shot and killed his ex-girlfriend, Elizabeth Fassett, 42, and her mother Barbara Fassett, 65, in their Ettrick home Monday.

They believe he then shot and killed his father, Herbert Bland Sr., 62, in his Dinwiddie home on Harris Drive around 1 p.m.

The Ettrick double homicide wasn't discovered until hours later when a UPS delivery driver discovered a dead body just inside the doorway of their River Road home around 5:45 p.m. Officers found a second body inside.

Chesterfield detectives on-scene were able to link the two cases when they heard about the Dinwiddie incident from news reports. A check with Dinwiddie police revealed a witness description of a vehicle that matched a description at the Chesterfield scene.

"Well when detectives went out to Dinwiddie to look into that situation, there set a vehicle at the Bland home that matched the description of what we were looking for, explained Major Terry Patterson with the Chesterfield Police Department. "So we knew we were going in the right direction at that point."

Bland Jr. was taken to the hospital with a gunshot wound, which Dinwiddie investigators believe was caused by his father. He is currently receiving treatment at VCU Medical Center and is expected to recover. Detectives have been speaking with him about the case.

Handguns possibly used in the incidents have been recovered in Dinwiddie, according to police.

Neighbors said there was a history of domestic incidents between Bland Jr. and Elizabeth Fassett, but nothing that led to charges.

Barbara Fassett worked in Chesterfield's planning department. Colleagues remembered her as a hard worker, whose efforts helped spur the county's development.

There was a history of domestic violence between Bland Jr. and his father, as well, according to Dinwiddie Police. They said they were familiar with the home and that Bland Sr. may have shot his son in 2010. No charges were filed in the shooting, as the Commonwealths Attorney's office decided not to prosecute believing the shooting was in self-defense.

Chesterfield police are asking anyone with information to call Crime Solvers at 748-0660.

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