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Charges dropped against Beach officer

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Posted at 1:37 PM, Jun 04, 2012
and last updated 2012-06-04 18:37:11-04

ACCOMACK – The Virginia Beach police officer who admitted, while suffering from a drug-induced psychosis, to stabbing and shooting at volunteer firefighters, left jail this afternoon after prosecutors dropped all charges.

The lawyer for rookie police officer Bradley Colas said the Accomack County Commonwealth’s Attorney “had absolutely no evidence” to take to trial, which was scheduled to start Tuesday. Moody E. “Sonny” Stallings said Colas left with his parents and would not make any statements.

Gary Agar, the commonwealth’s attorney, would not comment on this 11th-hour about-face. Previously, Agar had appeared unsympathetic to Colas’ claims that he acted out after a car crash in Accomack County because of a rare but documented psychotic reaction to the antibiotic Biaxin. Agar, in fact, fought Colas’ effort to be released on bail before trial and lumped on more serious charges as the case progressed.

Colas testified in a pair of hearings that he began hallucinating and hearing voices after taking the antibiotic. The officer said he was trying to escape demons and was driving to Philadelphia where he thought he would meet with Jesus when he went off the road in Accomack County.

He was unhurt in the crash and called 911. But, Colas testified, when the firefighters arrived, he thought they were evil and were preventing him from reaching Philadelphia. He admitted to stabbing one and then using his police pistol to shoot at another. State police and Accomack County sheriff’s deputies arrested him. He remained in jail until this afternoon.

It is unclear whether Colas, a top police-academy graduate, will be allowed to continue with his job at the Virginia Beach Police Department. Previously, Stallings said he was assured the department was open to the possibility. Public affairs officers for the police department could not be reached.