FALLING WATERS, W.Va. — Joshua Logan Stitley, 32, and another man, Roy Lee Wisotzkey, 33, of Hagerstown, Md., have been charged with first-degree murder, attempted murder, armed robbery and malicious assault, police said in a news release.
Wisotzkey told troopers that he and Stitley went to the Clems' house at 81 Vinca Lane with a sword and a baseball bat with the intention of robbing the house, according to police. Both men told police that Stitley stabbed Jack Clem during an argument, police said in the release.
Vickie Clem's cause of death is under investigation by a medical examiner, but appeared to have been trauma to the head, Sgt. J.D. Burkhart said.
Jack Clem, who had been stabbed in the groin and struck in the head, was flown to InovaFairfax Hospital in Virginia, where he was treated and released later Friday, Burkhart said.
Police learned of the incident at 8:21 a.m. when a caller reported there was a naked man in her front yard yelling for help, the release said. Jack Clem then told police that two people had broken into his house, stabbed him and possibly killed his wife, the release said.
While en route to the Clems' house, Burkhart learned that a suspect had fled the scene in an older-model, white Ford van. While headed north on Interstate-81, Burkhart saw the van driving south near the 20-mile marker, caught up to it and ran a registration check that showed it was registered to Vickie Clem, police said.
Burkhart attempted to pull the van over, but it did not stop, and he followed it at low speeds onto westbound W.Va. 9, police said. The van eventually was stopped west of Harlan Springs Road.
Stitley was identified as the driver, and Wisotzkey the passenger, police said.
Cpl. J.M. Walker, Trooper Z.L. Nine and members of the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department assisted with the traffic stop, police said.
Stitley was seen drinking a small pint bottle of vodka as Nine approached to speak to him, according to court documents. He appeared to be intoxicated and admitted he had consumed a lot of vodka, the release said.
When questioned by Walker, Stitley said he had stabbed his stepfather over an argument, and, when questioned further, said he stabbed his stepfather because he pushed him down the stairs, the release said.
Robbery alleged motive
In a statement to police, Wisotzkey said they originally intended to carry out a robbery with "no violence," according to court documents.
When Stitley was arrested, police found he had $475 in cash and an antique silver coin, the documents said.
Wisotzkey told Walker that when they went into the house, he was carrying a sword and Stitley was carrying a baseball bat. Wisotzkey said he followed Stitley up the stairs and, at the top, Jack Clem surprised Stitley and an argument ensued.
Wisotzkey said that at some point during the argument, he handed Jack Clem his sword, and that he later saw Stitley stab Jack Clem and strike him with the bat, according to police.
When questioned, Wisotzkey said he did not see Stitley strike Vickie Clem, police said.
Stitley was also charged with fleeing, obstructing an officer, and drunken-driving offenses, police said.
Stitley's operator's license had been revoked for driving under the influence on Monday, according to court documents.
He was previously convicted of DUI in 2003, the documents said.
Stitley was arraigned at City Hospital in Martinsburg, W.Va., where he was taken due to his intoxication, according to police and court documents.
By Friday evening, both Stitley and Wisotzkey were being held without bond at Eastern Regional Jail, according to a jail spokesman.
Quiet, friendly couple
Neighbors in the quiet, riverside community of Potomac Heights said the middle-aged couple at 81 Vinca Lane were friendly but quiet, often seen with their two large dogs, Sofie and Gus.
The dogs, a mastiff and a great Dane, were tied up in the yard Friday morning and were taken away by an animal control officer around 10:30 a.m.
Neighbor Donald Purnell, who lives around the bend from the home, said Jack Clem is a contractor who did construction in the Morgantown, W.Va., area, and, more recently, in the Washington D.C. area.
Vickie Clem's son had lived with them previously but had moved out after a dispute, Purnell said.
"Oh my gosh, I can't believe that," Purnell said when he learned of Vickie's death.
Purnell was one of several neighbors who stopped to watch the police activity Friday morning as investigators in latex gloves came and went from the split-level house with police tape in the driveway.
The community, where residents ride on golfcarts over hilly, tree-lined roads to a private river access point, is not a place neighbors expected to find a crime scene, they said.
"When you hear a siren, it's like, you know, 'What's going on?' — you so seldom hear them," said one man, who did not want to give his name.
At the house next door to the Clems' home, neighbor Sherry Rourke said her family had moved to the neighborhood about a month ago because it seemed like a quiet, attractive neighborhood. She said she had been looking forward to meeting the neighbors but had not yet spoken to them.
John Garlitz, who lives three houses down from the Clems on Vinca Lane, said all he knew about the couple was that Jack was a contractor and that they liked to ride motorcycles.
"They're people who really stuck to themselves," he said.