Michelle Young

Witness: Two people left Young home on day of slaying

Posted June 21, 2011

— Defense attorneys for Jason Young called nine witnesses to testify on his behalf Tuesday, including a woman who said she saw a minivan pulling out of the driveway of the Youngs' home on the morning that Michelle Young was killed.

Pat Young Full video: Day 10 trial testimony Cindy Beaver, a resident in the Enchanted Oaks subdivision where Jason and Michelle Young lived, said she was driving to work around 5:30 a.m. on Nov. 3,2 006, when she noticed the vehicle with two people – a male driver and a passenger that she presumed to be a woman – pulling out of the driveway.

About eight hours later, Michelle Young, 29 and five months' pregnant with her second child, was found beaten to death in her bedroom. Her daughter, Cassidy, then 2, was found unharmed hiding under the covers of her parents' bed.

Jason Young, who was arrested more than three years later, has said he was out of town on business when his wife died. If convicted, he faces life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Jason Young Jason Young in tears during murder trial testimony

Newspaper carrier Terry Tillery also testified Tuesday that she was in the neighborhood around 3:30 a.m. and noticed that the Youngs' house was "lit up and brighter than ever" and that she thought that there had been a party at the house the night before.

"That jumped out at me because normally it was dark," Tillery said.

A light-colored, medium-sized SUV was parked outside the home, and a minivan was in the street, she added.

Several other witnesses also testified Tuesday, including Jason Young's friends and family.

JsnYng01 Defense images of the Youngs

Gerald McIntyre, Jason Young's stepfather, testified that he and his wife told Jason Young about his wife's death at their home in Brevard, N.C., on the afternoon of Nov. 3, 2006, when he arrived at their house after his business meeting for an overnight visit.

"I told him, I said, 'Jason, Michelle is dead,'" McIntyre said. "He just about went to the ground. If I hadn't caught him, he would have went plumb on the ground."

Pat Young, Jason Young's mother, testified about how her son said goodbye to his slain wife on the day of her funeral – testimony that had Jason Young crying in court.

"He touched Michelle's hand, and then he reached over and rubbed his hand on that little mound that was his baby," Pat Young said.

Jason Young's sister, Heather McCracken, also recalled the day of the funeral.

"He was in pain. He was pale. He was crying. His eyes just kept on tearing up," she said. "His body – he was just there, but I think, mentally, he was just shutting down."

Jason Young Emotional day in Young murder trial

Prosecutors spent nine days trying to prove that Jason Young killed his wife because he didn't want to be married or have a family and that he wanted to live life on his own terms – drinking, partying and spending time with his friends.

Witnesses testified over the course of the trial that the couple often fought in front of others and that they didn't know how to resolve conflict.

Josh Dalton, a longtime friend of the couple, said Tuesday that the arguing, at times, caused him and his wife to discuss whether they should invite the Youngs to social events.

"At times, it could be volatile," Dalton said on prosecutors' cross-examination. "They had very heated arguments and were not scared to do it in public."

Dalton also said that he didn't think the Youngs would have married if Michelle Young had not been pregnant.

"I think most of us in our group felt (that way)," he said.

When it came to the possibility of the couple ever divorcing, Dalton said, Jason Young was concerned that he would never be able to see his daughter again.

"He had made a statement, at one time, that he was afraid if he ever got a divorce that Michelle would take Cassidy and move back to New York," Dalton said.

Defense attorneys contend that their client was not a good husband, having had two affairs, but that he did not kill his wife and leave his daughter alone in the house.

There was no forensic evidence, they have said, not even a drop of blood, linking their client to the crime, and there were two sets of adult shoeprints – a size 10 and a size 12 – near Michelle Young's body.

DNA samples from a hair found on a picture frame and jewelry box in the couple's bedroom, as well as two cigarette butts found at the house didn't match Jason Young's DNA.

Prosecutors say Jason Young left town for a business trip on the evening of Nov. 2, 2006, traveled to Hillsville, Va., checked into a Hampton Inn, and drove 169 miles back to Raleigh to kill his wife.


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  • dsheffield001 Jun 29, 2011

    OH the cigerect buts were through ins These people have watched farensic files more than once. They could have come from any ash tray. Probably to through some confussion in the case. What you think ?

  • dsheffield001 Jun 29, 2011

    well writnewlaws had you heard his testimony you would know why he googled head trama. Dont you remember he said he came up on a accident and he didnt know what to do to the driver which had head trama and he wonted to know more about what to do if that situation ever came up again . NG

  • dsheffield001 Jun 29, 2011

    I beleave his story about the door . I have done that before just to go down the hall to get some ice from the ice machine havent you?

  • dsheffield001 Jun 29, 2011

    Two thing .. they say he was moving security cameras outside his room in Virgina and in the same time frame he is suspose to be running around some gas station in King NC which is over a hour away i think they said? How could that be ? OH and why would he even come back to the motel if he paid by credit card? Think about it. That would have made hem even more late for his appt dont you think? The testimony from the Federal employee made my decision for me. She was a good witness and she knows what she saw and when she saw it. I know they tried to confuse her by trying to convince her that it was another week but she was positive and i beleave her.
    the truth will eventually come out..... NG

  • cwinslow Jun 27, 2011

    If the glove don't fit you have to acquit! Way too many loose ends with this case, and all too many times in a case like this the jury is excused from the court when there are issues that could bring a conviction, that they are not allowed to consider. Our judicial system may be one of the best in the world, but it is full of holes that allow the guilty to go free if they have the right council or enough money.I've been the jury foreman on two trials and there are people, as someone else pointed out in another blog, selected just to upset verdicts, who couldn't pour warm water from a boot. And there are cases where the prosecution doesn't have enough solid evidence for a jury to reach a guilty verdict.

  • tigresspen Jun 23, 2011

    Jody4663: I didn't buy the door stuff defense explained, as they saw it, in their CA either.

  • karen20 Jun 23, 2011

    He didn't do it!!!

  • fwright1976 Jun 22, 2011

    ummm....he hired someone to do it...duh!

  • bobbyj Jun 22, 2011

    without reasonable doubt... now that is going to be tough.

  • Alexia.1 Jun 22, 2011

    "Now, are we suppose to believe his story about the door not closing. Don't buy it!" --jody4663

    Why? This is not too unusual. Others talked about using the door latch to keep a door open, but I've often just pulled the door to the latch, but not latched it.