• MOTHER & CHILD Cyndi Gaulding being consoled and her late son, Tyson James Tharpe.
  • Unidentified supporter of defendant Cyndi Gaulding was among those wearing “Cyndi Strong” tee-shirt with Batman emblem in memory of five-year-old Tyson Tharpe, who was a big fan of the superhero.
  • This was the scene Friday outside Nottoway Courthouse, moments after Not Guilty verdict on Felony Homicide charge and hung jury on Felony Child Abuse .

Mother acquitted in death of five-year-old son

But County jury hung on Felony Child Abuse


A Nottoway County jury deliberated for more than 11 hours Thursday and Friday before acquitting 36-year-old Cynthia Gayle Gaulding of Felony Homicide in the 2017 death of her five-year-old son, Tyson Tharpe.

The same jury of eight men and four women couldn’t reach a unanimous verdict on a charge of Felony Child Abuse but, according to one juror, the panel’s final vote was Not Guilty by a 10-2 margin.

Ms. Gaulding’s supporters -- about 40 strong and mostly women -- rejoiced after the Not Guilty verdict was read aloud and formed a prayer chain outside the courthouse before celebrating and comforting one another. Many of them had attended court every day of the five-day trial. Some wore tee-shirts that read, “Love & Support for Cyndi” and “Cyndi Strong.”


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