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Two people accused in murder of Hopewell cab driver face new charges

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Alisa N. Dejesus, 19, and Dyshawn D. Simpson, 20, of Richmond, were charged with first-degree murder in connection to the death of James Wells.

HOPEWELL, Va. —  The two suspects accused of murdering a local taxi cab driver now face additional criminal charges. Hanover court records confirm Dyshawn Simpson, age 20, now faces an arson charge and a malicious wounding charge. Alisa Dejesus, 19,  is also now charged with arson.

Both had already been charged with the first-degree murder and abduction of James Wells.

Hanover investigators said Wells drove his 2004 gray Chevrolet minivan taxi from the Econo Lodge on Colonel Corner Drive in Hopewell to Mechanicsville where he was found dead.

Investigators say Wells was giving them a ride to Mechanicsville in August 2014, when they stabbed him repeatedly and set his cab on fire with a road flare.

“Surveillance images at that time at the Econo Lodge captured an image of a vehicle,” Hanover County Sheriff’s spokesman Major Mike Trice said at the time. “Investigators are seeking to locate and identify the owner. The vehicle appears to be a dark colored, four- door Cadillac with at white stripped rear passenger tire.”

Malibu Wells, James’ widow, said this does bring some sort of closure for the family, but there’s still many questions. Wells said she and James Wells had no relationship with the two suspects.

“I’ve never seen these people before in my life and they took away the most important person in my life,” she said.