Gore homicide charge dismissed; guilty of neglect
In Gloucester Circuit Court Friday morning, presiding judge William Hamblen tossed out the more serious of two charges facing Brian and Shannon Gore, a charge of homicide of their seven-month-old son, Conner Scott.
Ruling on a defense motion to dismiss the indictment, the judge said that, assuming the child had suffered from malnutrition, there was not sufficient evidence presented to draw the conclusion that that was the cause of the child’s death.
After hearing from a sole defense witness and a rebuttal witness called by the commonwealth Friday afternoon, Hamblen found the couple guilty of the lesser charge of felony child neglect. He set their sentencing for July 22.
Following the split verdict, Brian Gore’s counsel complimented the commonwealth’s case and said there were no winners. “There is no winning in these cases. One child is dead and the other child was abused,” attorney Michael Hyman said. “I think the judge followed the evidence.”
“This was a difficult case to prove, we knew that when we charged them,” said Gloucester Commonwealth’s Attorney Holly Smith “But you try the cases that need to be tried. At the end of the day, this case was about Conner Scott Gore and he got his day in court.”
The Gores are currently serving 30-year prison sentences for felony abuse and malicious aggravated wounding related to the maltreatment of their daughter. The girl was discovered emaciated in a makeshift cage in April 2011 when police went to the Gores’ home on an unrelated matter. Investigators later uncovered the remains of the young boy buried under a backyard shed of the couple’s home in a mobile home park in Hayes.
In July’s sentencing, they face up to an additional 10 years in prison.