The Never-Ending Shenandoah Trials

Shenandoah Trials: A never ending story from Gustavo Martinez on Vimeo.

Former Shenandoah police chief Matthew R. Nestor will have a busy 2011 defending himself in courts across the states.

Currently, Nestor, William Moyer and Jason Hayes are standing federal trial for allegedly obstructing the investigation of the beating of an undocumented immigrant on July 2008.

Yet, this is barely the beginning of a series of trials the former chief will face. Another judicial process awaits him stemming from the federal investigation that has him currently sitting as a defendant.

A federal indictment charges Nestor and his then second-in-command, Capt. Jamie Gennarini, with multiple counts of extortion and civil rights violations. According to the accusation, from 2004 through 2007, Nestor conspired to extort cash payments from several illegal gambling operations in the Shenandoah area and obstructed the investigation of the extortion scheme.

The indictment also alleges that on May 17, 2007, Nestor and Gennarini committed extortion by demanding a $2,000 cash payment from a local businessman and his family in exchange for releasing the businessman from their custody.

For this, the two men will face a federal trial starting September 27.

Before that, the same two will sit on another federal trial starting June 3. This one comes from a 2006 lawsuit alleging the officers deliberately beat David Vega to death Nov. 28, 2004, and then tried to make his death look like a suicide.

The plaintiffs, Carlos Vega and David’s fiancée, Genevieve Victor, are asking for at least $150,000 in compensatory damages and at least $150,000 in punitive damages, attorney’s fees and costs.

Their lawyer, Joe Welsh, has been attending the trial since the beginning and in the video featured here he talks more about the case.


About Gustavo Martínez Contreras

was born in Texas, brewed in Mexico City, seasoned in the Mexico-United States border, aged walking the streets of Philadelphia. He had a short-lived stint eating grits, fried chicken, and peaches in Atlanta. He later became a béisbol writer for El Diario de Nueva York. He has written about immigrant communities in English, Spanish, and some Spanglish. Although he does not have a shelf full of awards, Gustavo has received thank you notes and hugs from people who have trusted him with their stories. His work has appeared in Voices of New York, El Diario/La Prensa, Dallas’ Al Día, The Philadelphia Public School Notebook, Philadelphia Weekly, Radio Bilingüe, Latina Lista,, among others. He is currently pursuing a master's degree at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
This entry was posted in Immigration, Luis Ramírez, Shenandoah, Video. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The Never-Ending Shenandoah Trials

  1. Pingback: Shenandoah Police Trial Updates - WFTE Community Radio

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