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▣ Virginia man arrested for no-body murder

posted by Admin on March 22nd, 2017 at 9:57 AM

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Former Virginia Doctor Allegedly Killed Nurse Girlfriend Who Vanished Without a Trace in 2014

By Chris Harris•@chrisharrisment

Posted on March 16, 2017 at 1:37pm EDT
A former Virginia doctor allegedly killed his nurse girlfriend, who vanished more than two years ago and hasn’t been seen since, PEOPLE confirms.

But the attorney for 39-year-old John E. Gibbs tells PEOPLE the state has no evidence to support the charges, and that her client is merely the victim of overzealous investigators.

Zulma Pabon, 26, was last seen alive on June 6, 2014, according to a statement from the Chesterfield County Police Department. The licensed practical nurse was leaving her job at Commonwealth Fertility and Women’s Health at Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center.

For more:PEOPLE

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▣ Trial date set for Illinois man arrested in no-body murder case

posted by Admin on March 19th, 2017 at 10:56 AM

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Date set in murder trial of Harrisburg physician accused of killing his wife

ISAAC SMITH THE SOUTHERN Mar 2, 2017 Updated Mar 16, 2017 0

HARRISBURG — The Harrisburg man accused of killing his wife last year will have his day in court later this month.

After a brief motion hearing Thursday in a Saline County courtroom, defense for Brian Burns and Assistant State’s Attorney Jason Olson agreed on a March 22 trial date.

Burns, a local physician, was arrested in March and charged with first-degree murder. Prosecutors allege he killed his wife, Carla Burns, burned her body and spread the ashes to hide the crime. He also faces charges for allegedly soliciting the kidnapping of Saline County State’s Attorney Mike Henshaw while in jail.


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▣ Washington man arrested for 1982 no-body murder

posted by Admin on March 19th, 2017 at 10:29 AM

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Sultan man arrested for murder in 1982 Chelan County cold case
Sheriff reports Swaim suspected in disappearance of Cashmere resident
By Brandon Macz
Saturday, March 4, 2017 10:44 AM

Chelan County Sheriff Brian Burnett reported Friday his detectives arrested 60-year-old Sultan resident Bernard Swaim for first-degree murder in the 1982 disappearance of a Cashmere resident.

Stephen E. Smith, 30, was reported missing by family members on July 18, 1982. He was last seen six days prior at his home. Smith’s 1966 Pontiac Tempest was found abandoned on Dead Man’s Hill Road near Dryden in Chelan County several days after he was reported missing, according to a Chelan County Sheriff’s Office news release. Smith was never found.

For more:Monroe Monitor

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▣ Defendant found guilty in 1979 famous NYC no-body murder case involving Etan Patz

posted by Admin on February 17th, 2017 at 1:12 PM

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Jury finds Pedro Hernandez guilty in Etan Patz murder case

Updated February 14, 2017 10:06 PM
By John Riley
Reprints + -
A Manhattan jury has found Pedro Hernandez, pictured
A Manhattan jury has found Pedro Hernandez, pictured on Nov. 15, 2012, guilty of murder in the 1979 disappearance of 6-year-old Etan Patz. Photo Credit: AP / Louis Lanzano; Stanley K. Patz

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Victim’s father calls verdict “justice for our wonderful little boy”
Jurors not swayed by defense claim of another killer

A Manhattan jury on Tuesday convicted ex-bodega clerk Pedro Hernandez of murder and kidnapping in 6-year-old Etan Patz’ 1979 disappearance, writing a final chapter in a notorious mystery that transfixed New Yorkers for 37 years and turned missing children into a national cause celebre.

The verdict on the ninth day of deliberations came two years after the first trial of Hernandez, 55, of Maple Shade, New Jersey, ended with a jury hung 11-1 for conviction, and was quickly lauded by a relieved Stanley Patz, Etan’s father, who appeared near tears as he heard the foreman say “Guilty.”

For more: Newsday

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▣ Arizona man arrested in no-body murder case

posted by Admin on February 17th, 2017 at 1:08 PM

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Arrest made in missing man's disappearance, death in Pinal County staff , Associated Press
12:01 PM, Feb 2, 2017
10:28 AM, Feb 3, 2017

CASA GRANDE, AZ - Pinal County officials have made an arrest in connection with the death of a man reported missing this week.

Cody Robert Virgin, 25, was reported missing from the Arizona City area and he was last heard from around 9:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 30.

Virgin's vehicle was found abandoned south of Silver Bell Estates and he hadn't contacted or shown up to work.

Pinal County Sheriff's Office says 26-year-old William Daniel Randolph was arrested in connection with Virgin's disappearance and death.

For more: ABC15

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▣ Idaho man pleads guilty in no-body murder cases

posted by Admin on February 17th, 2017 at 1:04 PM

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Northern Idaho man pleads guilty to killing missing man

Posted: Feb 02, 2017 10:32 AM PST

Updated: Feb 02, 2017 10:32 AM PST

Northern Idaho man pleads guilty to killing missing man

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho (AP) - A northern Idaho man accused of shooting and killing another man after a road-rage incident has pleaded guilty.

The Coeur d'Alene Press reports that David Hutto on Wednesday changed his plea, admitting to first-degree murder, first-degree kidnapping and robbery. A fourth criminal charge of arson was dropped as part of a plea agreement.

For more:KXLY

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▣ Two NJ teens charged in no-body murder case

posted by Admin on February 17th, 2017 at 1:01 PM

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2 charged in murder of missing Neptune teen; Body never found
Father speaks out after 2 charged in daughter's death in NJ
Josh Einiger reports from Belmar.
Eyewitness News
Friday, February 03, 2017
NEPTUNE, New Jersey (WABC) --
Two people have been arrested in connection with the murder of a teenager who went missing in New Jersey late last year.

The body of 19-year-old Sarah Stern still has not been found, but the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office confirmed that 19-year-old Liam McAtasney and 19-year-old Preston Taylor are now charged in her death.

"I miss her," father Michael Stern said.

He'd been clinging to hope his daughter, his only child, would turn up alive.

Stern was last seen at home in Neptune City on December 2, and her car was later found abandoned on a bridge in Belmar with the keys still in the ignition.

Authorities say McAtasney, a former classmate, had gone to Stern's home with a plan to rob her. Instead, he is accused of strangling her. He then allegedly contacted Taylor for assistance in moving and ultimately disposing of the body.

Prosecutors say the pair drove her car to the bridge early the next morning and dumped her into the Shark River.

"They were best friends in like eighth grade, it's really shocking to me," said Sam Draper, a friend.

For more:ABC7

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▣ No Body Guy quoted on NJ no-body murder case

posted by Admin on February 17th, 2017 at 12:34 PM

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'No body' cases can be proved, experts say
Andrew Ford , @AndrewFordNews Published 8:50 p.m. ET Feb. 2, 2017 | Updated 12:44 p.m. ET Feb. 6, 2017
Liam McAtasney and Preston Taylor, both 19 from Neptune City, face charges in connection with the murder of Sarah Stern and the disposing of her body in order to avoid detection. THOMAS P. COSTELLO
While Sarah Stern remains missing, prosecutors will have to turn to other evidence to prove their murder case
(Photo: Courtesy Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office)
A missing piece of evidence common to homicide cases – the body of the deceased – hasn't stopped the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office from filing charges in what they are calling the murder of Sarah Stern.

Liam McAtasney and Preston Taylor, both 19, were charged Thursday with crimes related to the death of Stern, 19. McAtasney is charged with killing Stern. The prosecutor's office hasn't said how it plans to make its case.

A murder case without a body can be proved, experts told the Asbury Park Press. Prosecutors focus on other evidence — circumstances that indicate that a person was killed and who killed them.
“You essentially prove the case that they haven't done what you’d expect them to be doing," said Alton D. Kenney, a former first assistant Monmouth County prosecutor who works as a defense attorney in Brick. Kenney was involved in the 1975 prosecution of notorious New Jersey serial killer Robert Zarinksy, winning a case that was the first murder conviction in New Jersey in which a body hadn't been found, Kenney said.

Kenney described how a prosecutor might put on evidence of the victim's breaks in habits. He gave the example of a victim who routinely calls family members, but hasn't done so since they went missing. Other evidence could include no activity in the victim's bank account or their cell phone going unused.

Thomas A. DiBiase, a former federal homicide prosecutor in Washington, D.C., who consults on "no body" murder cases, described three elements of evidence important to such a case:

•Forensic evidence like blood spatter, hair, fibers or fingerprints

•Confessions to family or friends

•Confessions to police

For more: Asbury Park Press

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▣ Idaho man charged in no-body murder

posted by Admin on January 28th, 2017 at 3:07 PM

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Post Falls man arrested for murder of missing person
Austin Regimbal

Posted: Dec 21, 2016 04:51 PM PST

Updated: Dec 21, 2016 06:19 PM PST

Post Falls man arrested for murder of...
POST FALLS, Idaho - Spokane Major Crimes detectives arrested Colby Vodder, 26, for the murder of missing person Bret Snow.

Snow was last seen in Spokane Valley in December 2015.

Spokane Valley Major Crimes detectives found probable cause to search Vodder's house in the 2100 block of North Riverstone Drive in Post Falls.

On Wednesday, Spokane Valley investigators, along with the North Idaho Violent Crimes Task Force, and the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office SWAT Team, served the search warrant and arrested Vodder.

Vodder is in the Kootenai County Jail on a Fugitive from Justice charge. He will remain in Kootenai County Jail until he is extradited to Spokane County on a 2nd Degree Murder charge.

For more: KXLY

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▣ Reversal in Texas no-body murder case

posted by Admin on January 28th, 2017 at 3:00 PM

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Who Killed Vicki Nisbett? And Is She Even Dead?
No verifiable crime scene, no murder weapon, no motive, and no body
By Chase Hoffberger, Fri., Jan. 27, 2017

An investigator inspects the bedroom door for DNA.

As of this Thursday, Jan. 26, the State Prosecuting Attorney, the office which represents the state in the Court of Criminal Appeals, has 21 days to appeal the recent ruling in the 3rd Court of Appeals that the murder conviction on Rex Nisbett be overturned, and that Nisbett be acquitted of the murder of his estranged wife, for which he was sentenced to 42 years in prison. Anything but a successful appeal to the CCA would affirm the 3rd Court's judgment, ordered Dec. 15, 2016, and reopen as a cold case the 25-year mystery of what happened to Vicki Nisbett, whom nobody has seen or spoken to since Dec. 14, 1991.

Nisbett's case was tried in Williamson County, and was to serve as a touchstone conviction for the district attorney at the time, Jana Duty. It was one of the first major cases brought to the grand jury under Duty's administration; she had run in the 2012 primary against prosecutor John Bradley as a change candidate who could close cold cases and carry out justice. Bradley, WilCo's D.A. for a decade, saw his reputation crumble when news broke that he vigorously fought against the DNA retesting that eventually exonerated Michael Morton of his wife Christine's murder in 1986. Duty planted campaign signs with red bandannas a bloodstained allusion to the blue bandanna in evidence that freed Morton and urged voters to support a candidate who believed in "No More Michael Mortons." As D.A., Duty established the county's Cold Case Unit to help close unsolved cases.

Duty took office in January 2013, and by February had reopened investigations into Vicki's disappearance. The county had looked into the case sporadically since the murder, but never had enough evidence to take Rex to a grand jury. Late that March, with the high-profile second Morton trial ongoing (the one that convicted Mark Alan Norwood), Duty announced she'd secured a murder indictment against Rex. "It is important to me to help families who have suffered such a tragic loss," Duty said in a press statement, one of three she'd post online during her term. "I want to help these families find answers and find justice so that they can eventually find peace."

The Nisbett case was an unusual one: a cold case from the early Nineties without any trace of a dead body. Vicki's disappearance yields no verifiable crime scene, no murder weapon, and no motive. Simply, she cannot be accounted for after Dec. 14, 1991, at around 5pm. She planned to attend a company Christmas party at the Driskill Hotel with her friend Julie Coen-Tower, but Coen-Tower said she never made it. The next morning when they spoke again, Rex told Coen-Tower that Vicki never came home.

For more:Austin Chronicle

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▣ California man arrested for no-body murder

posted by Admin on January 28th, 2017 at 2:56 PM

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Salinas Police arrest murder suspect with no body to be found.

Pam Marino Jan 17, 2017 0

Theres no body, but based on a years worth of detective work, the Salinas Police Department and Monterey County District Attorneys office believe they have a strong case against 23-year-old Tai Cruz of Salinas, who was arrested Friday in the murder of 18-year-old Paulino Guzman III.

Guzman, also of Salinas, was reported missing in January 2016 by family members, but based on numerous interviews with witness and others, police came to believe by the summer that Guzman was dead, Cmdr. Stan Cooper said at a press conference Tuesday at police headquarters.

The thing that makes this unique is that to this day, Paulinos body has not yet been found, Cooper said.

Because that obviously brings about some unique circumstances, we began working very closely with the Monterey County District Attorneys Office, and eventually we were able to secure an arrest warrant for the person we believe is responsible for Paulinos death, and that is Tai Cruz.

Cruz was arrested without incident late Friday afternoon at work on a $2.2 million arrest warrant, with a charge of one count of homicide. He was later booked into Monterey County Jail. Cooper expects Cruz to be arraigned by Wednesday.

Guzman was last seen on Dec. 12, 2015 outside a party at an apartment complex on the 2200 block of Main Street. His family reported him missing in January 2016, telling police they heard on the street that he had been killed, Cooper said. A missing persons investigation was opened up at that time.

Through numerous interviews police say they were able to piece together that Guzman got into an argument with Cruz the night of Dec. 12, over some sort of personal disagreement."

I think we can say at this point that Mr. Guzman fell victim to gun violence, Cooper said. Police believe the incident is gang-related.

For more:Monterey County Weekly

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▣ No Body Guy quoted on podcast Up and Vanished

posted by Admin on January 28th, 2017 at 2:39 PM

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Up and Vanished

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▣ No Body Guy quoted on California no-body murder case

posted by Admin on January 28th, 2017 at 2:24 PM

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Trial in Sierra LaMar disappearance tests no-body murder cases

By Jenna Lyons, San Francisco Chronicle
January 16, 2017 Updated: January 16, 2017 5:13pm
A sign with a photo of missing teen Sierra LaMar is posted in Morgan Hill in April 2012. Photo: Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP
Photo: Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP
When Sierra LaMar left her Morgan Hill home one morning in 2012, there was no indication the 15-year-old was headed anywhere besides high school. At 7:11 a.m., around the time she typically headed to her bus stop, she texted a friend to make plans to meet up on campus.

That was the last time anyone heard from her. A day later, her phone was found in a field, while her discarded clothes, books and purse turned up a day after that. But as investigators became more firm in their belief that Sierra had been abducted and slain, they never found her body.

Undeterred, prosecutors will go to trial this week and ask a jury to convict a 25-year-old man of capital murder, saying the evidence against him is strong enough to win a conviction in what is often referred to as a no-body case.
Antolin Garcia-Torres appears in a Santa Clara County courtroom in 2012. Photo: Paul Sakuma, AP

They face a difficult challenge needing to prove not only that the defendant was involved but that Sierra is in fact dead but not an unprecedented or insurmountable one.

While nearly three decades have passed since a Santa Clara County jury sentenced a defendant to death with no body to be found, similar cases have been won more recently in the Bay Area and around the country.

These are very much circumstantial cases where youll be pulling out many pieces of the picture and putting them together, but youre not ever going to have all the pieces, said Thomas Tad DiBiase, a former federal prosecutor who won a conviction in a no-body murder that happened in 2003 and later wrote a practical guide to trying such cases.

According to DiBiase, who keeps a database of hundreds of the cases going back to the 1800s, advancements in DNA technology and modern computing have allowed authorities to more frequently go to trial without bodies. The conviction rate at trial, he said, is nearly 90 percent.


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▣ Oregon no-body murder suspect found dead in cell

posted by Admin on December 31st, 2016 at 1:22 PM

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Murder suspect Ackroyd found dead in Salem prison cell

ALEX PAUL Albany Democrat-Herald Updated 12 hrs ago 0

SALEM John Arthur Ackroyd, who in 2013 was charged with the 1990 murder of his stepdaughter Rachanda Pickle, has died of natural causes at the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem.

Ackroyd, 67, was found dead in his cell about midnight Thursday.

Prison officials said that medical staff administered life-saving efforts, but to no avail. Ackroyd was pronounced dead at 12:23 a.m. Friday. He was the cell's sole occupant.

Ackroyd has been incarcerated since Jan. 11, 1994, after being found guilty of two counts of aggravated murder and three counts of murder in cases from Jefferson County. He was convicted in 1993 of the Christmas Eve 1987 murder of Kaye Jean Turner in the Metolius River area.

Ackroyd was also awaiting trial for the 1990 murder of his 13-year-old stepdaughter, Rachanda Lee Pickle of Sweet Home.

Linn County Sheriffs Office detectives followed the latter case for more than two decades and formulated a no-body homicide case to get an indictment against Ackroyd.

For more: Corvallis Gazette Times

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▣ Nebraska woman charged in no-body murder of love rival and posed as her

posted by Admin on December 31st, 2016 at 12:46 PM

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Prosecutors: Woman charged with murder in 2012 disappearance posed as victim online to cover up death

By Alia Conley and Andrew J. Nelson / World-Herald staff writers Updated Dec 29, 2016 (0)

Douglas County prosecutors say a trail of social media messages and physical evidence links Shanna Golyar to the death of a woman who was her rival for a mans attention.

Golyar, now 41, posed as Cari Farver on the Internet to cover up Farvers slaying, prosecutors alleged Tuesday in court.

Farver, then 37, disappeared in 2012. Authorities think she was killed in Omaha, but Golyars defense attorney argues that no body has been found, so theres been no proof of a homicide.

Douglas County Judge Lawrence Barrett on Tuesday set Golyars bail at $5 million; typically first-degree murder defendants are ordered held without bail.

Golyars attorney, James Martin Davis, said his client hardly knows Farver and prosecutors have little evidence connecting Golyar to a crime.

Farver was last seen alive on the morning of Nov. 13, 2012. Omaha police have said they think she was killed within the next 24 hours at an apartment near 120th Street and West Dodge Road.

Farvers mother, Nancy Raney, reported her daughter missing three days later to the Pottawattamie County Sheriffs Office. About two months later, authorities found Farvers vehicle in Omaha.

The two women were girlfriends of the same man, prosecutor David Wear said. Farver was from Macedonia, Iowa, and Golyar is from Persia, Iowa.

Golyar made numerous attempts to show that Farver was still alive, Wear said, by sending messages to Farvers phone and by making it seem as if Farver had left town.

Wear said Golyar posed as Farver online to conceal the fact that she was no longer alive.

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▣ Iowa man charged in 2000 no-body murder of girlfriend

posted by Admin on December 31st, 2016 at 12:37 PM

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Cold case justice: Tait Purk charged with murder in disappearance of Tama woman in 2000


TAMA COUNTY The fiance of a woman who disappeared in April of 2000 was charged Friday with killing her.

A grand jury charged Tait Otis Purk, 50, with first-degree murder in the death of Cora Okonski of Tama, who vanished in 2000.

Purk is serving time in a federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kan., for manufacturing methamphetamine and other drug and firearm charges. He was scheduled to be released in April, according to the Tama News-Herald.

The grand jury was convened by the Tama County Attorneys Office and the Iowa State Attorney Generals Office to review evidence and testimony in the cold case of Okonski, who was 23 when she disappeared April 16, 2000.

Purk told investigators and the media Okonski borrowed a little money from him to go buy cigarettes April 16 and never returned to their Tama home, leaving behind her son Austin, who was 2 years old.

For more: WCF Courier

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▣ Hawaiian woman pleads guilty to manslaughter in no-body murder of her child

posted by Admin on December 31st, 2016 at 12:25 PM

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19 years after boy's disappearance, mother pleads guilty to manslaughter

Peter Boy Kema disappeared in 1997 and became one of the most well-known missing children in Hawaiis history.

HONOLULU -- The mother of a Hawaii boy who became the face of a campaign for missing and abused children pleaded guilty to manslaughter Thursday, confirming nearly 20 years after he disappeared that the child is dead.

More answers to what happened to the 6-year-old known as Peter Boy could be revealed when Jaylin Kema testifies against her husband, Peter Kema Sr., who is scheduled to go on trial for murder in April. Waiving her marital privilege and testifying truthfully is part of a plea deal with prosecutors.

Jaylin Kema made the plea in a Hilo courtroom Thursday morning, CBS affiliate KGMB reports.

Kema and her husband, Peter Kema Sr., initially pleaded not guilty to the murder charges in April.

For more:CBS News

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▣ No-body murder conviction overturned in Texas

posted by Admin on December 27th, 2016 at 9:57 AM

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Murder conviction flawed, court says, tossing Williamson mans verdict

Claire Osborn American-Statesman Staff

11:26 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016
Rex Nisbett was convicted of killing his wife, Vicki Lynn Nisbett, at their Anderson Mill apartment in 1991.

Appeals court rules that prosecutors didnt provide sufficient evidence that Rex Nisbett had killed his wife.

The state 3rd Court of Appeals has reversed the murder conviction of a man found guilty of killing his wife in 1991 in her Williamson County apartment.

Rex Nisbett was sentenced to 42 years in prison in 2014 after a jury found him guilty of the murder of 29-year-old Vicki Lynn Nisbett. Her body hasnt been found.

The courts ruling Thursday said prosecutors failed to provide sufficient evidence that Rex Nisbett killed his wife. They were in the process of getting a divorce.

The 3rd Court of Appeals didnt make any ruling concerning Nisbetts innocence, said his lawyer, Keith Lauerman. He said the court simply reversed the murder conviction based on insufficient evidence.

Lauerman said he believes Rex Nisbett is innocent and was relieved by the courts ruling. He said the jury disregarded the testimony of a witness who said he had seen Vicki Lynn Nisbett alive a few days after she was allegedly killed.


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▣ Parents in Michigan accused of no-body murder of their 3 year old

posted by Admin on December 27th, 2016 at 9:52 AM

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Parents accused of killing missing daughter and burying her by tracks
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton talks to the media about the charges filed in relation to a missing 3-year-old child Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at Genesee District Court in downtown Flint. Mark Felix |
Mark Felix |
Roberto Acosta | By Roberto Acosta |
December 06, 2016 at 1:00 PM, updated December 07, 2016 at 12:07 PM
FLINT, MI -- The parents of a missing 3-year-old Flint child have been charged with murder after a local teacher reported potential child abuse concerning a sibling.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton announced the charges Tuesday, Dec. 6 following an investigation that led police and his office to believe Kimora Simon was beaten to death and buried in a shallow grave near Evergreen Regency Townhomes off Lippincott Boulevard.

Khairy Joshuawon Simon, 26, and Erika Shantae Finley, 27 were arraigned by Genesee District Judge Nathaniel Perry on charges of felony murder, tampering with evidence, lying to a peace officer in a violent crime investigation, first-degree child abuse, and first-degree child abuse in the presence of another child.

Finley also faces one count of welfare fraud.

For more:Michigan Live

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▣ Good article on recent Baltimore County, Maryland no-body murder cases

posted by Admin on December 27th, 2016 at 9:35 AM

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I consulted on the Tetso case.

Murder cases without body difficult, not impossible, for prosecutors

Baltimore County attempting to win third unique case in recent years
Updated: 6:40 AM EST Nov 15, 2016
Ron Snyder
Digital Editor

Travis Eugene Elleby, 30, is charged with murder in the 2010 death of his girlfriend Cherice Ragins.

Cherice Ragins left her Baltimore home on Feb. 19, 2010.
The 24-year-old Baltimore woman was never seen or heard from again.

More than six years have passed, with friends and family wondering what happened to Ragins. That question has yet to be answered, but police and prosecutors now believe that they at least have an idea of the last person to see Ragins alive.

Travis Eugene Elleby, 30, was indicted in September by a Baltimore County grand jury on first-degree murder charges in connection with Ragins death. Elleby is being held at the Baltimore County Detention Center.

Ragins body has never been found.

Law enforcement officials admit that it is rare to pursue a murder case against a defendant when there is no body to confirm a death.

Youre in a position of trying to prove a negative, Baltimore County States Attorney Scott Shellenberger said. It also takes more time than a traditional murder case because you need to show that the person is likely dead and theres no other conclusion of what happened to that person other than that they are dead.

For more:WBALTV

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