Bland County stabbing

Crime scene tape remains near the Wilderness Road location where a body was discovered on Saturday. Police are treating the death as a homicide.

The Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation's Wytheville Field Office continues to investigate Saturday's discovery of human remains in Bland County.

At approximately 12:25 p.m. Saturday (May 23), the Virginia State Police was notified of a body discovered in a ditch along Wilderness Road. Bruce M. Ritchie, 57, of Herminie, Pennsylvania, was found stabbed to death outside his vehicle, a white 2019 Nissan Sentra. Both were located in a wide, pull-off area on the right shoulder of Wilderness Road approximately 100 yards from the exit for I-77. Wilderness Road is Route 606 and is Exit 62 off Interstate 77 in the South Gap community of Bland County.

State police have determined that Ritchie had been traveling north on I-77 when he apparently pulled off the exit and parked his vehicle. A knife was recovered at the scene.

As the Virginia State Police continues to pursue several leads, investigators are encouraging anyone with information to call the Virginia State Police Wytheville Division at 276-228-3131 or contact us by email at questions@vsp.virginia.gov. State police is especially interested in hearing from anyone who may recall seeing the white Nissan, other vehicles and/or individuals at the pull-off on Wilderness Road Friday evening (May 22) through noon Saturday (May 23).

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