published Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

Police: Va. senator in hospital after assault

This Feb. 1, 2010 file photo shows Virginia State Sen. Creigh Deeds, D-Bath, gestures during debate on a health care bill during the Senate session at the Capitol in Richmond, Va. Police say a Deeds, a state senator and former gubernatorial candidate is in the hospital after being assaulted at his home in Virginia, and another person was found dead inside the home. Virginia State Police said in a news release Tuesday that Deeds, who unsuccessfully ran for governor four years ago, had suffered serious injuries. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)
This Feb. 1, 2010 file photo shows Virginia State Sen. Creigh Deeds, D-Bath, gestures during debate on a health care bill during the Senate session at the Capitol in Richmond, Va. Police say a Deeds, a state senator and former gubernatorial candidate is in the hospital after being assaulted at his home in Virginia, and another person was found dead inside the home. Virginia State Police said in a news release Tuesday that Deeds, who unsuccessfully ran for governor four years ago, had suffered serious injuries. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A state senator and former gubernatorial candidate was critically injured Tuesday after being assaulted at his Virginia home, and another person was found dead inside the home, police and hospital officials said.

The Virginia State Police did not describe how Democratic Sen. R. Creigh (kree) Deeds was injured, and authorities have not identified the other person in the home. Deeds twice ran unsuccessfully for governor, losing both times to Gov. Bob McDonnell.

Deeds was flown to the University of Virginia Hospital in Charlottesville after the assault at his home in rural Bath County, which is in western Virginia on the border with West Virginia. The hospital said Deeds was in critical condition Tuesday morning.

Police planned a news conference at noon.

A spokeswoman for the Bath County Sheriff's Office confirmed only that an incident occurred in Millboro, Deeds' hometown, and that the sheriff's office was investigating along with state police.

Deeds, a former Bath County prosecutor, was elected to the House of Delegates in 1991 and to the state Senate in 2001, in a special election after the death of Emily Couric. He ran for attorney general in 2005, but lost to Republican Bob McDonnell. The margin of victory was fewer than 400 votes out of nearly 2 million cast.

Deeds and McDonnell squared off again in 2009 in the race for governor after Deeds defeated Terry McAuliffe and Brian Moran in the Democratic Party. But Deeds lost badly that time.

Deeds, a rural Democrat who drafted a constitutional amendment guaranteeing Virginians' right to hunt, long enjoyed support from the National Rifle Association and other gun-rights advocates.

Deeds and his wife, Pam, divorced shortly after the 2009 campaign.

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