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Two indicted in 1996 W.Va. slaying

May 14, 1997

By DAVE McMILLION

Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A federal grand jury in Clarksburg, W.Va., has indicted two men in the 1996 drug-related slaying of Jennifer Labelle Folmar in Shepherdstown, W.Va., according to U.S. Attorney William D. Wilmoth.

Eric Michael Turner, 22, and Pernell Jeffrey Sellers, 20, were named in a five-count indictment, Wilmoth said. If found guilty of the charges, they could face life in prison, Wilmoth said.

Both were being held in the Washington County Detention Center in Hagerstown awaiting trial on drug charges, officials said. Bond for each of the men has been set at $300,000, officials said.

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Turner and Sellers are accused of conspiring to sell crack cocaine in connection with crack operations in Shepherdstown, Martinsburg and Hagerstown, Wilmoth and the indictments allege.

The indictments allege Turner and Sellers traveled from Maryland to Shepherdstown on Oct. 24.

They "performed the commission of a crime of violence to further their business enterprise involving controlled substances by killing Jennifer Labelle Folmar," according to allegations in the indictment.

Wilmoth would not comment further on why Folmar was killed.

Shepherdstown Police Chief Cecil Arnold praised the Eastern Panhandle Drug and Violent Crimes Task Force for their lengthy investigation into the slaying.

The task force, made up of police officers from across the Eastern Panhandle, conducted hundreds of interviews and traveled to Washington several times to track down leads, Arnold said.

"They really took a can of worms and systematically plucked one worm at a time out and got it straightened out," Arnold said.

Folmar, 23, was found the night of Oct. 24 in a white Camaro that was parked on the wrong side of German Street in Shepherdstown. Folmar, who had been shot and stabbed, died early the next day at Jefferson Memorial Hospital in Ranson, officials said.

The car in which Folmar was found was parked near the intersection of Ray Street, where there had been problems with cocaine trafficking, police said.

Shortly before her death, Folmar had completed a drug rehabilitation program and was living with her mother in Bunker Hill, W.Va.

Turner allegedly obtained cocaine from sources in Washington, D.C., and New York City, according to the indictment. Sellers allegedly distributed the drugs, although Turner would allegedly "front" crack to runners in Shepherdstown, Martinsburg and Hagerstown, according to the indictment.

On the day Folmar was found, Turner allegedly had about 149 grams of crack cocaine, according to the indictment.

Count one of the indictment alleges Turner engaged in a continuing criminal enterprise from 1995 to February 1997, according to Wilmoth. Count two alleges Turner and Sellers conspired to distribute cocaine.

Count three alleges Sellers, allegedly working in the furtherance of a continuing criminal enterprise, killed Folmar, and Turner engaged in a continuing criminal enterprise, Wilmoth said.

Count four alleges Turner and Sellers traveled in interstate commerce with the intent to carry on a business enterprise involving controlled substances, Wilmoth said.

Count five alleges Turner and Sellers, aided and abetted by each other, used and carried a firearm on Oct. 24 last year, Wilmoth said.

Arnold said drug dealing around Ray Street has decreased, which is mostly due to neighborhood watch efforts and other indictments that have been returned against other people for drug dealing in the area, Arnold said.

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