Info needed for Buckingham cold case

Published 9:30 am Saturday, January 25, 2020

The Buckingham County Sheriff’s Office is seeking new information regarding the death of an Arvonia man in 2017. The case, previously announced as a suspicious death, has evolved into a robbery homicide.

Marshall “Peter” MacArthur Newton

According to Buckingham County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Brent Uzdanovics, county resident Marshall “Peter” MacArthur Newton was found deceased at his residence located at Bridgeport Road in Arvonia Nov. 10, 2017.

Newton’s case was originally referred to as a suspicious death, stated Uzdanovics, but evidence later began to indicate the involvement of foul play. Newton’s death certificate deems his passing a homicide. The indication that some items were taken during the event further transformed the investigation into a robbery homicide.

Email newsletter signup

Uzdanovics said a number of locals came forward after Newton’s death to provide information instrumental in establishing a timeline for the investigation. However, details revolving around the incident began to run dry. The case has since grown cold.

As a result, the sheriff’s office is requesting help from the community to bring justice to Newton’s death.

Uzdanovics compared the case to a puzzle. His hope is that new information provided by the public may help investigators to reveal the overall picture and connect the missing details in the investigation.

“We’re looking for those key puzzle pieces, and all we probably need is one,” he said. “If we get two or three, great, but if we get that one solid puzzle piece, it’s going to put this thing all together and we can resolve it.”

According to Uzdanovics, Newton was well-known in his community. Born in 1943, he was often referred to as the “neighborhood watch” due to his tendency to sit in a car at the end of his driveway and keep watch over the area as vehicles drove past. Despite being affected by a heavy speech impediment and other setbacks, he often enjoyed trips to local gas stations and convenience stores. He became a regular customer, stopping by two or three times each day.

Newton left behind a grieving family. The unsolved case has prevented his loved ones from finding a sense of closure.

Uzdanovics has found himself personally affected by the case. As a law enforcement officer for 20 years, he said he can count on one hand the number of cases that have proven as difficult as this one.

“It haunts me that I can’t bring that closure to the family. I’ve done everything in my power to try to resolve it,” he said. “I’m just hoping that by doing this, somebody comes forward and provides that key puzzle piece.”

He also advised that the sheriff’s office has no indication there is an ongoing threat to community safety.

Uzdanovics hopes any individuals who believe they may have information pertaining to Newton’s death will come forward to provide the vital details.

“He has a family, just like everybody else does,” he said in reference to Newton, who was 74 at the time of his death. “We’re seeking help from the community. Do the right thing, come forward to provide information to hopefully resolve this case. He’s not forgotten. He was a human being. He had a soul. We care.”