Vinton man to serve 50 years for first-degree murder

William Ray (Roanoke City Jail)

ROANOKE, Va. – A Vinton man has been sentenced to serve 50 years for first-degree murder after the deaths of two people back in 2020.

William Ray, 23, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of April Barnicoat, 42, of Roanoke, and Eric Surface, 44, of Salem.

On Tuesday, Ray was sentenced to 80 years with 30 years suspended for two counts of first-degree murder. He was indicted on both counts by a Roanoke City Grand Jury in 2020.

Police said that Ray knew both victims.

On March 1, 2020, just after 4:30 p.m., police responded to the 1600 block of Queen Anne Drive SE for a well-being check and arrived to find the bodies of Barnicoat and Surface.

Both were found with what police deemed significant injuries, according to a search warrant.


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Samantha Smith joined WSLS 10’s award-winning digital team as a content producer in July 2018.