Judge denies bail for woman suspected in Blodgett murder
CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) — A judge denied bail for a woman accused of helping her boyfriend in a murder.
Julie Ann Thurman is charged with murder for the May 21 death of Wesley Newell, the Corvallis Gazette-Times reported Thursday.
Julie Thurman has been held in jail without bail since prosecutors filed the charge on June 1.
Her lawyer, Mike Flinn, argued that his client should be given bail since she didn’t shoot Newell. He adds that there is no evidence that shows that Julie Thurman knew Newell would be killed when she dropped off Jim Morris at the residence in Blodgett where the shooting occurred.
Judge Locke Williams denied Flinn’s request Thursday, citing strong evidence against Julie Thurman.
Flinn has pleaded not guilty in the murder.
The home where the shooting occurred is owned by her estranged husband Bragi Thurman, prosecutors said.
Bragi Thurman was at the house with his son, Troy Thurman, Newell and Cassandra Wilhelm during the night of the shooting. The two are friends who were helping Bragi Thurman jump-start his tractor.
The gun Morris used to shoot Newell and Wilhelm belonged to Bragi Thurman and was stolen by Julie Thurman, Deputy District Attorney Amie Matusko said.
Matusko believes the motive for the shooting was Julie Thurman’s fear of losing access to the house.
Deputies found Julie Thurman and Morris in a pickup after the shooting with an Uzi rifle on floorboard of the passenger seat, Benton County Sheriff’s Office Detective Chris Duffitt said.
The ammunition in the gun matched the ammunition found at the scene.
Prior to Williams’ decision Thursday, Newell’s wife urged the Williams not to release Julie Thurman because she feared for the safety of Bragi and Troy Thurman.
Wilhelm also asked Williams not to set bail for Julie Thurman.
Information from: Gazette-Times, http://www.gtconnect.com