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November 3, 2017

CVS manager murder case sent to grand jury

Bernard Clark Duse Jr. allegedly shot his store manager twice in the head the night of July 26.
We’re going to go forward with the case zealously and pursue justice.
— Fauquier County Commonwealth’s Attorney James P. Fisher
CVS Murder Case
• What: July 26 murder in parking lot of CVS pharmacy at 510 Blackwell Road, Warrenton.

• Victim: CVS Manager Alex Olsen, 64, of Culpeper County.

• Defendant: Bernard C. Duse Jr., 76, of Alexandria.

• Charges: First-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of murder.

• Sentence: If convicted, Mr. Duse could be sentenced to life in prison for first-degree murder and a maximum three years for the weapon charge.

• Defense attorney: John F. Carroll, Fairfax.

• Prosecutor: Commonwealth’s Attorney James P. Fisher.

• Next: A Fauquier County grand jury will convene, Monday, Nov. 27, to decide whether to indict Mr. Duse on the two charges.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
A Fauquier County grand jury this month will decide whether to indict an Alexandria man for murdering a Warrenton CVS store manager in July.

An employee of the Blackwell Road pharmacy, Bernard Clark Duse Jr. on July 26 allegedly shot and killed store Manager Rex Mack Olsen, 64, at about 10:15 p.m.

Authorities arrested Mr. Duse on Aug. 2 and charged him with first-degree murder and use of a firearm in the commission of murder.

Fauquier General District Court Judge J. Gregory Ashwell determined Friday morning that probable cause exists to send the case to the grand jury for action.

The grand jury will take up the matter Monday, Nov. 27.

“We’re going to go forward with the case zealously and pursue justice,” Commonwealth’s Attorney James. P. Fisher said after Friday’s ruling.

On Thursday, Judge Ashwell conducted a preliminary hearing in which three people testified, including a CVS district manager and two investigators.

Mr. Duse, 67, shot Mr. Olsen twice — once in face and once in the back of the head, according to investigators.

Warrenton police Sgt. Tim Carter testified Thursday that he interviewed a witness the night of the killing who heard two “firecracker” noises, “saw one man standing over another man” and “saw a bright flash in front of the hand” of Mr. Olsen’s assailant.

Sgt. Carter — the investigation’s lead detective — said the weapon used to kill the store manager had not been recovered.

But, records show that Mr. Duse several years ago bought two handguns in Connecticut, he said.

Investigators recovered one of those guns from the defendant’s home, Sgt. Carter added.

He and sheriff’s Deputy Jason Romero testified Thursday about extensive cell phone data showing a “path of travel” that tied Mr. Duse to the crime scene.

Warrenton police the night of the shooting found Mr. Olsen’s body near a dumpster behind the Blackwell Road store.

Mr. Olsen had just finished his shift when Mr. Duse, who had not been scheduled to work that night, confronted him in the pharmacy parking lot, according to investigators.

The two “had a strained relationship” related to an age discrimination lawsuit Mr. Duse had filed against CVS, court documents indicate.

During that proceeding, Mr. Olsen “testified unfavorably against” Mr. Duse, who had hoped to become a store manager.

In the spring of 2016 — as part of a corporate-wide management reorganization plan — CVS eliminated assistant manager positions, District Manager Robert Arnold told the court Thursday.

Mr. Duse had been the Blackwell Road store’s assistant manager.

But the reorganization plan created a new position, store operations manager, Mr. Arnold said.

After an assessment, Mr. Duse got offered the operations job, he said.

But that effectively removed Mr. Duse from CVS’s the store manager career track.

Mr. Duse previously had filed discrimination lawsuits against Barnes and Noble and IBM.

In letters and an Aug. 17 general district court hearing, relatives described him as a kind, soft-spoken and law-abiding family man.

Mr. Duse’s employment discrimination lawsuits against Barnes and Noble and IBM demonstrate that “my uncle does not take matters into his own hands,” one niece wrote.

“This is surreal,” she said of the murder and weapon charge against her uncle.

“I have never heard him raise his voice or utter a bad word about anyone,” another niece wrote. “He has always been a positive man of great control and restraint.”

Married without children, Mr. Duse attended the University of Pittsburgh on scholarship, served in Vietnam as an Army lieutenant and earned a master’s in business administration from Harvard University, according to his family.

If convicted, Mr. Duse could be sentenced to life in prison for first-degree murder and a maximum three years for the felony weapon charge.

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Rover 530 · November 3, 2017 at 8:22 pm
TFE322: You mean the "accused" not the "criminal". I believe Duse committed the crime due to the prima facie evidence presented in the media, but the trial has not been held. Who knows what will happen? Or when?
TFE322 · November 3, 2017 at 2:41 pm
Suggestion: Perhaps place a picture of the victim and a small picture of the criminal.
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