Michelle Young

State can appeal Jason Young case to NC Supreme Court

Posted August 20, 2014

Jason Young listens during his retrial on March 5, 2012, as Judge Donald Stephens reads the verdict after a jury unanimously found him guilty of killing his wife Michelle Young. (Photo by Shawn Rocco, The News & Observer, Pool)

— The North Carolina Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the state can appeal a ruling that grants a new trial for a Raleigh man convicted of killing his pregnant wife eight years ago.

The state petitioned the court in April after the Court of Appeals overturned Jason Young's 2012 first-degree murder conviction because the trial judge allowed jurors to hear about civil litigation against Young.

The 40-year-old was found guilty of killing his wife, Michelle Young, who was found Nov. 3, 2006, in a pool of blood in the couple's home on Birchleaf Drive.

Prosecutors argued that the couple had a volatile marriage and that he wanted out of the relationship. Defense attorneys, however, maintained that Jason Young was out of town on business when someone else killed Michelle Young.

The Appeals Court found that Young's presumption of innocence was "irreparably diminished," in part, by prosecutors' evidence about a wrongful death lawsuit and a default judgment declaring Young the killer because he never responded to the lawsuit.

It's unclear when the state will file its appeal to the higher court.

Young remains in prison at the Alexander Correctional Institution in Alexander County.


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  • alexandertammy Aug 21, 2014

    I agree, the appeal court got it right. How can it be "ok" for the civil ruling to be allowed? There is no justice for EITHER family without a fair trial.

  • Lightfoot3 Aug 21, 2014

    "The appeals judge was wrong." - foghat005

    Nope. The appeal was correct. That lawsuit provided no evidence whatsoever of his guilt, and was decided by default because he didn't respond. The prosecutor unethically presented it because they knew it would taint the jury.

    I don't know if he's guilty or not, but I do know the prosecutor was wrong in what they did. They should only show EVIDENCE that PROVES him to be the murderer. Unproven theories, and unrelated stuff only meant to play on the emotions of the jury should not be allowed.

  • lynne0312 Aug 21, 2014

    The Court of Appeals had it right. If left as is, it's sets a dangerous precedent that has never been allowed to stand in a criminal trial. The jury hearing the outcome of civil suits and the default judgement read aloud declaring him a "slayer", not to mention that it was the same judge in the civil proceedings. How can anyone believe that is appropriate? It had never been done before and the prosecutors and the judge knew that. There are statutes forbidding this that go back a long time.

    Jason Young deserves a new trial. Had they not introduced the civil stuff, it very likely would have resulted in an acquittal because there is no evidence linking him to the crime.

    Everything about his alibi checks out and most importantly the gas mileage and receipts. Everything the state put together is unsupported and does not point toward Jason - the camera stuff at the hotel and Gracie's testimony.

    I hope for the best for Jason. He deserves a new trial.

  • Forthe Newssite Aug 21, 2014
    user avatar

    he's still guilty!

  • foghat005 Aug 20, 2014

    The appeals judge was wrong. Now we have to go through this all again. When will Michelle Young finally get justice? At least he's still incarcerated.