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Son held in Virginia jail as mother's stabbing death is probed

Staff Report
May 22. 2018 9:47PM
Phillip Nash, left, is being held in a Virginia jail. The body of his mother, Frances Nash, right, was found Monday in Canterbury; she had been stabbed to death. 

Frances Nash, the Chichester woman whose body was discovered on Monday afternoon in Canterbury, was stabbed to death, authorities announced Tuesday.

Meanwhile, her son Phillip Nash of Canterbury remains in a southern Virginia jail cell after he was pulled over on Interstate 95 in Emporia, Va., Monday night.

New Hampshire State Police had issued “be on the lookout” for Phillip Nash Monday afternoon. He was said to be driving a stolen maroon 2000 Ford F-350 truck with a New Hampshire vanity plate.

The police alert said Nash was wanted for a probation violation and for driving a stolen vehicle, as well as being a person of interest in a homicide.

Homicide prosecutor Jeffery Strelzin said Nash is expected to appear at some point in a Virginia court on a fugitive-from-justice charge.

He will continue to be held while awaiting extradition, Strelzin said. He has not been charged in his mother’s murder.

“The circumstances that led to Ms. Nash’s death are still under investigation,” Attorney General Gordon MacDonald said in a news release. “Anyone with information about Ms. Nash’s activities last week and this past weekend is asked to contact the New Hampshire State Police at 603-271-3636.”

Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Jennie V. Duval determined that death of Frances Nash, 51, was a homicide; she suffered multiple stab wounds.

Her son was arrested by Virginia State Police at the 16-mile marker of Interstate 95 near the North Carolina border about 8:20 p.m. Monday.

Virginia State Police said a trooper followed Nash for about 25 miles after spotting the pickup truck which was the subject of the New Hampshire police bulletin.

The trooper waited for backup, then pulled over the truck and arresting Nash without incident.

As of Tuesday, Nash was in the Southside Regional Jail in Emporia, held without bail.

Frances Nash’s car, a 2011 Mercury SUV, was discovered on Monday on Hackleboro Road in Canterbury. She had been last seen on Thursday; her body was discovered early Monday afternoon in Canterbury. At the time, police asked for help finding her son.

A candlelight vigil was held Monday night at Maxfield Public Library in Loudon, where she worked as a program coordinator.

The library was closed in her memory on Tuesday.

On the library Facebook page Tuesday, Sharyn P. Goddard commented: “Fran shared her passion for yoga with Loudon for so many years and spread her goodwill and cheer throughout our community. Her spirit will long be remembered. Many heart are broken; family, friends and by those who knew her casually. Rest easy dear Fran.”

Crime Chichester Canterbury Hopkinton

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