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William H. Ledbetter Jr.

Retired Spotsylvania Judge William H. Ledbetter Jr. died Oct. 6. He was 79.

A native of Stedman, North Carolina, Judge Ledbetter graduated first in his class at the University of Richmond law school and got his master’s degree at Yale Law School. He taught law school at the University of South Carolina before setting up a practice in the Fredericksburg area in the early 1970s.

Judge Ledbetter was appointed as judge for the Spotsylvania Circuit Court in 1987. He went on to preside over hundreds of criminal and civil cases and received the Harry L. Carrico Outstanding Service Award in 2004 from the Judicial Council of Virginia before his retirement in 2005. Though the majority of his judicial time was spent in Spotsylvania, Mr. Ledbetter made regular appearances in other area courts, as well.

After he retired, Judge Ledbetter continued to frequent the courtroom as a substitute judge up until 2017.

Judge Ledbetter is survived by his wife, Susan; his daughters, Kimberly and Jennifer; his stepson and several grandchildren.