UPDATE: Man charged with murder after mother’s suspicious death in Pulaski County


UPDATE 4:02 p.m.: The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office has charged Cory Steven Mangekian with first degree murder in the death of his mother, Sandra Lee Mangekian.

Authorities say he is currently being held without bond at the New River Valley Regional Jail.

PULASKI COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — Just one day after Pulaski County authorities asked for the community’s help to find an armed and dangerous man wanted in connection with his mother’s suspicious death in Fairlawn, that man was tracked down and taken into custody.

According to the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, authorities responded to 6711 Oxford Avenue in the Fairlawn area at approximately 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 21 with regard to a possible dead person inside the residence.

When units arrived, the sheriff’s office says they found a woman — later identified as 60-year-old Sandra Lee Mangekian of that Oxford Avenue residence — “deceased with a suspicious cause of death.”

During the investigation, authorities learned the victim’s vehicle was missing from the residence, as well as a firearm and ammunition. However, the victim’s vehicle was tracked down to another Fairlawn residence, where investigators discovered someone had broken into the unoccupied residence and taken an Infinity SUV.

The sheriff’s office identified the victim’s son, 26-year-old Cory Steven Mangekian, as a person of interest in the case.

Officials announced on Thursday, April 22 that he was wanted for felony unauthorized use, felony breaking and entering, and felony grand larceny, with additional charges possible in the future.

After a private tip from a citizen, sheriff’s office says Cory Mangekian was located at the Food Lion on Tyler Avenue in Radford and taken into custody at approximately 12:30 p.m. on Friday, April 23.

In their announcement on Friday, Pulaski County authorities thanked the Radford City Police Department for quickly responding when the wanted man was located in their jurisdiction; the Virginia State Police Special Crimes Division; the U.S. Marshalls Service, who verified the stolen vehicle was in Georgia after the crime was committed; and the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division for the countless hours spent working on the case.

“A special thanks goes to the citizens, both of Pulaski County and neighboring jurisdictions who contacted our office with information and ultimately located the suspect and stolen vehicle in Radford City,” Pulaski County Sheriff Mike Worrell said in Friday’s statement. “The success of our agency is dependent on the relationship we have with our community, and today, that relationship speaks volumes as we work towards closure for a victim many of you never met. I want to thank each of you for your continued support for my office, but most importantly, for the support you show the men and women serving Pulaski County.”

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