CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. All charges against David Eisenhauer were certified and all but one charge against Natalie Keepers were certified to the grand jury.
The only charge against Keepers that was not certified to the grand jury was an accessory after the fact charge. That was dropped at the prosecution’s request.
Both Virginia Tech students are still being held without bond in connection to the death of 13-year-old Nicole Lovell of Blacksburg.
Several new details were revealed in court Friday morning.
During a police interview, Natalie Keepers confessed to her role in the crime.
When police were investigating Lovell’s disappearance, they were led to Eisenhauer through social media accounts. During his interview with police, Eisenhauer said he talked to a girl online in December. In January, they opened up to each other. He said Nicole Lovell confided in Eisenhauer that everyone hated her and she asked to meet him.
During the interview, Eisenhauer admitted to going to Lovell’s house, met her, gave her a side hug, then left. He later told police they should be looking for a live body instead of talking to the last person who saw her alive. He then asked to call a lawyer.
After seizing Eisenhauer’s cell phone, investigators were led to Keepers. She told investigators that she and Eisenhauer met at a fast food restaurant to plan the killing. They discussed possible ways to kill Lovell. That included drugging Lovell, Keepers hiding in the back of Eisenhauer’s car and knocking her out, making Lovell’s death appear as a suicide, or making it appear that Lovell died from the cold weather. Keepers also suggested a place to drop off the body.
After leaving Cookout, Keepers said she was under the impression that Eisenhauer was going to meet Lovell and kill her.
The next morning, Keepers said Eisenhauer sent her a message saying “it’s done.” Keepers said that Eisenhauer also asked her to meet.
KEEPERS DESCRIBES TO INVESTIGATORS GETTING RID OF BODY
Keepers and Eisenhauer met up, turning off their cell phones, and headed toward Craig Creek Road. When they pulled off, Keepers said she saw a lot of blood in the snow. She said she had never met Lovell before, and only saw pictures of her in the media while investigators searched for her.
Keepers said they dragged Lovell’s body down a hill and forced her into Eisenhauer’s trunk. They traveled to the Walmart in Wytheville to get cleaning wipes and bleach, then started driving toward Galax.
Eisenhauer pulled off a road that appeared familiar to him. He took off Lovell’s clothes, wiped down her body, and cleaned off the blood. Her clothes were placed in a Walmart bag. Lovell’s body was then pushed down an embankment. Her body was found in Surry County, North Carolina, just over the Grayson County line. She said the original plan was to dump Lovell’s body on property owned by Eisenhauer’s grandparents.
KEEPERS TELLS INVESTIGATORS ABOUT GETTING RID OF EVIDENCE
On the way back to Blacksburg, Eisenhauer and Keepers stopped at a McDonald’s in Dublin. They threw away clothes in a dumpster, washed their hands, got a drink and left.
At another location, Keepers said Eisenhauer took a bloody knife out of the center console and threw it into the woods.
The next day Eisenhauer and Keepers met at a laundromat on the campus of Virginia Tech to wash bloody clothes. Later, she said they drove toward the New River Valley bridge on the Giles County/West Virginia line. Keepers said they threw away Lovell’s boots, a small knife, a box cutter, and a backpack.
When they got back to campus, Keepers took to her dorm room Lovell’s Minions blanket, a pink cell phone, a charger, and the bag Lovell’s body was in.
During the investigation, Keepers accompanied investigators to where certain events took place. There were still blood spots on Craig Creek Road.
Throughout her interview with police, she told investigators she wanted to help them. She said she was not present during the murder but took part in the planning. Keepers said Eisenhauer was a sociopath, and that she was a sociopath in training. Keepers said Eisenhauer made her feel like she was in a secret club, and that David understood her.
SOCIAL MEDIA PLAYS ROLE
Social media messages were a key part of Friday’s hearing. In one message, Keepers told Eisenhauer that she smelled like cleaning supplies and wanted to take a shower. Keepers apparently told Eisenhauer that she would help him clean up from the murder because she was used to taking care of her sick family.
For the hearing, Eisenhauer wore a black suit and remained emotionless. Keepers wore a purple zip-up sweatshirt.
Lovell’s father, step-mother, and mother were all in court for the hearing. While some details were being talked about Lovell’s father, David Lovell, cried. Her mother, Tammy Weeks, ran out of the courtroom at one point.
Eisenhauer is charged with abduction and murder. Keepers is charged with concealment of a body and accessory before the fact.
Watch WDBJ7’s 6 p.m. newscast for more details.
Two former Virginia Tech students charged in the disappearance and death of a 13-year-old girl are due in court for a preliminary hearing.
Eighteen-year-old David Eisenhauer is charged with kidnapping and first-degree murder in the January stabbing death of Blacksburg seventh-grader Nicole Lovell. Nineteen-year-old Natalie Keepers is charged with being an accessory to kidnapping and murder and with helping hide the body.
A judge will decide after Friday's preliminary hearing whether there's probable cause to send the case to a grand jury.
At a previous hearing, a prosecutor said the two college students from Maryland met at a fast-food restaurant on Jan. 26 to plan Nicole's death. Authorities have not given a possible motive.