Hadsell pleads guilty to federal weapons charge

Wesley Hadsell, father of missing Anjelica Hadsell, arrested on unrelated charges the same day crews search for his daughter. WAVY Photo

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Wesley Hadsell entered a guilty plea on a federal weapons charge in court Friday.

Hadsell’s public defender, Keith Kimball, tells WAVY.com his client’s sentencing can range from no jail time to a life sentence.

Hadsell pleaded guilty Friday to purchasing approximately 80 rounds of ammunition in December 2013, according to court documents.

Hadsell, 37, is the adoptive father of AJ Hadsell who disappeared in March and was later found dead in April behind an abandoned home in Franklin.

In the midst of the search for AJ, police searched Hadsell’s hotel room and found bullets. He was charged a second time for possessing ammunition, but he pleaded not guilty to that charge in September.

Court documents say if the prosecution argues that Hadsell is a career armed criminal, sentencing guidelines can be bumped up from a maximum of 10 years to life in prison.

“We do not believe his record will qualify him as an armed career criminal,” said Kimball.

Hadsell will remain in federal custody until a judge decides his fate in a sentencing hearing March 18.

Police have not named any suspects in AJ’s death at this time.

“I know Norfolk police are still actively investigating this,” said Jennifer Hadsell, AJ’s mother. “I am confident the person responsible will be identified soon.”

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