Columbus woman makes Recorder’s Court hearing in August 2020 stabbing of Antonio Blanding

Crime
Vivian Fletcher in Recorder's Court

Vivian Fletcher in Recorder’s Court

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — A Columbus woman accused of stabbing her lover to death was in Recorder’s Court this morning.

The 35-year-old Vivian Fletcher is charged with the August 8, 2020 death of Antonio Blanding at 32nd Avenue and Cusseta Road.

He was found dead about 2:30 that morning.

Detective Matt Sitler told the court that an eye witness told police that Fletcher stabbed Blanding. At the time of the death, Fletcher was wanted on a separate aggravated assault of Blanding.

Fletcher’s attorney Shevon Sutcliffe Thomas asked for charges to be dismissed because the witness did appear in court.

“The detective came as testified about witnesses being intimidated or witnesses being scared,” Thomas said after the morning hearing. “And one eyewitness was supposed to have allegedly saw what happened. But the witness wasn’t here. And in my opinion, that’s all the evidence he had.”

Judge Julius Hunter ruled there was probable cause to hold Fletcher and send the case to Superior Court.

And Vivian Fletcher was back again, Monday afternoon.

Thomas used the afternoon aggravated assault hearing to begin to build a defense for the felony murder charge.

Vivian Fletcher is facing charges from two incidents, the first on March 2 and the second five months later, on Aug. 8.

Police claim Fletcher stabbed Antonio Blanding in March, then fled to Florida, near Jacksonville. They claim that Fletcher then stabbed Blanding to death in August of last year.

In the second Recorder’s Court hearing on the aggravated assault police testified that Blanding told them she stabbed him in March 2020.

After spending a year on the run, Fletcher was apprehended in March of this year in Levy County, Fla. She was brought back to Georgia last month.

Thomas implied she wasn’t even in Georgia when Blanding was killed in August.

When asked why she came back to Georgia in August, Thomas responded:

“From what I … they said she went to Florida. This is what they said after the March 2nd incident she left and went to Florida. Because she found out she had a warrant and they picked her up in Florida. She didn’t come back. They brought her back.”

Asked about the murder being months after the aggravated assault, Thomas responded:

“Like I said. Like I said. They testified that she was in Florida. They went to Florida and got her.”

Police say Blanding and 35-year-old Fletcher were involved in what one detective described as a long-term “sexual relationship.”

Hunter dismissed two charges stemming from the March 2nd incident. Possession of a knife while committing a felony and domestic violence. He said there was not probable cause.

Hunter bound the murder and aggravated assault charges over to Superior Court and ordered Fletcher held without bond.

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