RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Just seven days before VCU administrator Suzanne Fairman was killed, an electronic monitoring device was removed from her alleged killer’s ankle. The suspect, 59-year-old Thomas Clark of Henrico, had been out on bond.
In October of 2018, court records show Clark and two others were charged in Henrico with several misdemeanors, including distribution of drug paraphernalia, destruction of property and two counts of petit larceny.
Clark, a registered sex offender with a lengthy criminal rap sheet, was initially denied bond. However, Michael Huberman, the Chief Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney for Henrico, said as the case continued on and lab work in connection with it wasn’t back yet, the judge granted Clark bail.
Clark was then placed on a GPS monitoring system. Huberman said after there appeared to be no issues or problems with Clark, the ankle monitor was removed on May 2 at the request of his attorney.
One week later, on May 9, Richmond police believe Clark, a contractor who had been doing work on Fairman’s home in Stratford Hills, raped and murdered the VCU administrator.
According to court records, Fairman had complained about the work Clark had done on her deck.
In those same documents, detectives state they believe Clark returned to Fairman’s home, offered to finish the job but then proceeded to tie her up, hold her in her bedroom and strangle her.
Prosecutors told 8News they didn’t know Virginia State Police was investigating Clark at the same time the ankle monitor was removed from his ankle. 8News learned they were in process of investigating the sex offender for failure to register his change of employment as well as some social media and email accounts. Clark now faces charges for that.
8News has also uncovered this isn’t the first time Clark has been accused of trying to kill a Richmond woman.
In 2005, a Richmond grand jury indicted him with maliciously causing bodily injury with the intent to maim, disfigure, disable or kill.
Photos in the court file show a woman badly beaten. Her eye is black and blue and her neck is cut up. Clark was also charged with abduction and armed robbery.
Court records show he pleaded guilty to attempted robbery in that 2005 case and was sentenced to ten years in prison. On Monday, Clark was indicted in the Fairman case on charges of murder, rape and abduction with the intent to defile.