Local News

Detectives want Jason Young's text messages

Posted January 4, 2010 7:19 p.m. EST
Updated January 4, 2010 7:24 p.m. EST

— Wake County sheriff's detectives have asked the court for access to Jason Young's text messages to help with their murder case against him.

Young, 35, was arrested last month on a first-degree murder charge in the beating death of his wife, Michelle Young, 29, who was found dead inside the couple's Wake County home on Nov. 3, 2006.

In an affidavit filed Dec. 30, investigators ask for a warrant to obtain copies of any text messages received and sent from his cellular phone.

Young told investigators he was out of town in Virginia on business when his wife was killed, but detectives have suggested in warrants that his whereabouts in the hours surrounding the slaying do not coincide with surveillance video and witness statements.

New information disclosed in the search warrant affidavit indicates Young checked into a Hillsville, Va., Hampton Inn at 10:49 p.m. on Nov. 2 and that he used his key card once during his stay.

Other video shows him more than an hour later exiting a side door that hotel staff later found to be propped open. Investigators theorize that "a similar approach may have been used on the door to Jason Young's room, thus explaining a single use of the key card."

Investigators also describe details about a security camera being unplugged and being plugged back in the next day by hotel staff.

Michelle Young was five months' pregnant at the time of her death. An autopsy found she died from blunt force trauma to the head after being hit at least 10 times.

Investigators haven't offered a motive for the killing, but in search warrants, investigators have described the couple's marriage as a "volatile" relationship that included violent arguments and infidelity on his part.

Jason Young remains in the Wake County jail without bond. The state could announce as early as March whether it will seek the death penalty in the case.