UPDATE: Judge denies bond for man jailed after death in Parkersburg

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PARKERSBURG W.Va (WTAP)- UPDATE: 2/26/20 03:40 P.M.

A man accused of robbing another man who died Saturday morning after a fight in a Parkersburg apartment will remain in jail without bond while authorities continue their investigation.

Judge J.D. Beane denied bond for Michael Johns, 32, during a hearing Wednesday morning in Wood County Circuit Court. Johns has been in the North Central Regional Jail since his arraignment late Saturday on a first-degree robbery charge.

Parkersburg Police said Johns and Christopher Valkos, 34, got into a fight early Saturday morning at Valkos' Greenbrier Gardens apartment. Johns allegedly went there was part of a drug and took an unspecified amount of money after Valkos was left incapacitated.

There has been no official ruling on how Valkos died, and authorities are waiting for the results of a toxicology report from the West Virginia State Medical Examiner's Office.

UPDATE: 2/22/20 11:31 P.M.

Michael T. Johns was arraigned in Wood County Magistrate Court Saturday evening around 10 p.m. on a First Degree Robbery charge.

He was already on parole, and due to his parole violation, Magistrate Robin Waters says he will remain incarcerated pending a preliminary hearing.

The suspicious death of Christopher Valkos is still under investigation.


Parkersburg police have identified both the victim and suspect in the suspicious death investigation at the Greenbrier Garden Apartments.

According to court documents, Michael Johns, 32, was taken into custody early Saturday morning as the main suspect in the investigation. According to police, he lives at a local homeless shelter.

Parkersburg Police Chief Joe Martin says that the victim, Christopher Valkos, 34 of Petersburg West Virginia, messaged Johns to buy drugs. Johns then came to the Greenbrier Garden Apartments where Valkos lived. Chief Martin says sometime after the drug transaction, a physical altercation occurred with Valkos ultimately was incapacitated. Authorities say Johns then took money from Valkos' pocket.

Chief Martin says that both people involved in the incident have extensive criminal records prior to this incident.

“Both subjects were on parole after serving time in a prison here in West Virginia. Both were paroled to Parkersburg. ”

Martin also said that currently, Johns is charged with robbery pending an autopsy report to confirm a cause of death. He said that they do know a physical altercation did happen, but they do not yet know the exact cause of death.

Johns is scheduled to be arraigned in magistrate court on Saturday night.

2/22/20 1:00 p.m.

Law enforcement officials are investigating a suspicious death at the Greenbrier Garden Apartments in Parkersburg.

Police say that early this morning, two men were involved in an altercation, and as a result, one of the men died.

Authorities have a suspect in custody in relation to the incident.

WTAP will speak with Parkersburg Police Chief Joe Martin shortly for more information.

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