RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Henrico man charged in the murder and rape of Suzanne Fairman, a Virginia Commonwealth University administrator, will have to wait until November for his trial.
Richmond police were called to a home in the 7400 block of Tanglewood Road on May 9, 2019, for a welfare check after Fairman never arrived in Florida as she was expected to. Once they reached the home, officers found Fairman face down in the tub located in the main bathroom, according to court documents.
The affidavit also revealed that water was running and a knife with blood on it was visible on the counter in the same bathroom.
Thomas Clark, who had been arrested a week later on unrelated charges, was eventually indicted on charges of murder, rape and abduction with the intent to defile in October.
Fairman’s son, Scott, told 8News that Clark was a contractor hired to stain his mother’s deck and that he believed that Clark purposefully did not finish the deck in order to go back to the home and murder his mother.
According to online records, Clark has a lengthy criminal history, including a rape conviction in Alexandria in 1988. 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. 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 and he was 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. A week later, on May 9, Fairman was killed inside her home in the Stratford Hills neighborhood in South Richmond.
Clark’s trial was scheduled for July, but was moved to Nov. 9 and Nov. 10.