In a procedural move, a Virginia prosecutor has dropped charges against an abduction suspect awaiting a federal trial in Philadelphia for the kidnapping of Carlesha Freeland-Gaither.

Delvin Barnes, 37, had been charged in the abduction and attempted murder of a 16-year-old Richmond girl. Authorities have said the girl, doused in bleach and gasoline, escaped while Barnes was apparently digging a grave for her.

Charles City County Sheriff's Capt. Jayson Crawley said Wednesday that prosecutor Robert Tyler plans to ask a grand jury to indict Barnes on state charges after the federal prosecution is completed. Tyler did not immediately respond to an e-mail message.

In a statement last month, Tyler and the Sheriff's Office said their decision was a "coordinated tactical maneuver designed to allow the federal prosecution of the crimes in Pennsylvania and Maryland to proceed... ."

In Philadelphia, Barnes is accused of grabbing Freeland-Gaither, a 22-year-old nursing assistant, from a Germantown street on Nov. 2, stuffing her into the trunk of his car, and holding her captive for three days. Freeland-Gaither was rescued in Jessup, Md.

Barnes has pleaded not guilty. - Robert Moran