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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

This woman will be a prison inmate, just like her husband

VIRGINIA BEACH — A 31-year-old North Carolina woman, who took part in an attack here that left an Uber driver with permanent injuries, is headed to prison.

Jennifer Marie Costa was sentenced Monday to 12 years, with six years suspended, for malicious wounding, according to the Virginia Beach Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

“This sentence was above the high-end of the Virginia State Sentencing Guidelines recommendation,” according to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

Costa’s husband, David Costa, is serving 24 years and 4 months in prison for aggravated malicious wounding, also in connection with the attack April 8, 2017.

Jennifer Costa has prior convictions for two counts of contempt of court, three counts of speeding, driving without a license, and several other traffic offenses.

The attack

At 11:30 a.m. April 8, 2017, the Uber driver was entering Interstate 264 westbound at the Oceanfront when he “unintentionally began tailgating a car driven by Jennifer Costa, with her husband, David Costa, in the passenger seat,” the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office wrote in a news release.

The victim passed the couple’s vehicle, but the pair began following him, “tailgating him, and repeatedly flashing their high-beams at him.”

The Uber driver took the first exit ramp at First Colonial Road and stopped for a red light, the husband and wife stopped behind him.

Prosecutors said David Costa jumped out of the car, opened the victim’s driver’s side door, and attacked the Uber driver.

The victim leaned back to avoid the blows. He was stabbed in the chest.

The Uber driver was able to retrieve a knife from his car, and David Costa went back to his wife’s vehicle.

Jennifer Costa, prosecutors said, “then accelerated and hit the victim with her car.”

She then reversed, struck the victim’s car, and, at the urging of her husband, tried to hit the victim a second time, according to prosecutors.

The pair left, but the victim managed to take a photo of their license plate. The Uber driver, realizing he was injured and bleeding, pulled off the road and called police.

Officers later found Jennifer and David Costa near “the vehicle’s registered address later that night.”

The victim survived the attack but has a “permanent injury to his legs” from being struck by the couple’s car. He also has a scar on his chest from the stab wound.

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