A father in Virginia was convicted by the county court on Monday, Feb. 7, for murder after he reportedly killed his adopted stepdaughter and hid her body at a local abandoned home.

Forty-three-year-old Wesley Hadsell has been convicted of murdering his stepdaughter Angelica “A.J.” Hadsell in 2015 through a heroin overdose before hiding her body in an abandoned house and using a piece of plywood to cover her face, Law&Crime reported.

The lawyers of Wesley Hadsell attempted to push doubt into his involvement in his stepdaughter’s death, saying that she had just gone through a breakup and had suicidal memes on her phone when she died.

However, the prosecutors of the case pointed at the evidence that was accumulated, including the fact that they found A.J.’s body by following the GPS unit in Hadwell’s van, and the fact that cell phone data puts A.J.’s phone with Hadwell’s the night she disappeared, according to the Virginian-Pilot.

“Why did Hadsell have the body if he didn’t kill her?” the prosecution asked the defense during the case. “Why would he dump her behind an abandoned home, face down in mud under a piece of plywood if he wasn’t covering up a crime?”

“There was no reason for the defendant to be there,” Attorney Toni Colvin said.

A.J. also reportedly died from what coroner Wendy Gunther is calling “homicidal violence” while a lethal dose of heroin was in her system. The prosecution believes that A.J. was abducted by Hadsell, beaten, and then poisoned with heroin before she died.

The defense tried to argue that A.J. overdosed on migraine medication and not heroin, which the prosecution called “absurd.” They then connected the heroin in her system with the fact that Hadsell was kicked out of his house by his wife due to his drug use, with a dealer testifying that he reportedly sold him the drugs that they found in his motel room.

The jury found Hadsell guilty after a 45-minute deliberation.

A.J.’s mother and two of her younger sisters were there to witness the conviction.

Wesley Hadwell, a father from Virginia, was convicted on Monday for the murder of his stepdaughter A.J., who was found in an abandoned home a month after she was murdered. This is a representational image. Ecka Photography/Unsplash.

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