Michelle Young

Crime scene agent describes bloody scene at Young home

Posted February 13, 2012 9:48 a.m. EST
Updated February 13, 2012 7:36 p.m. EST

— Testifying Monday in the retrial of Jason Young, a crime scene investigator described for jurors the grisly scene in which he found Michelle Young's body inside the couple's Raleigh home more than five years ago.

Michael Galloway, an investigations supervisor for the City-County Bureau of Investigation, the organization that collects evidence for law enforcement agencies at crime scenes in Wake County, showed jurors video and photos of the Youngs' home on the afternoon of Nov. 3, 2006, the day the 29-year-old pregnant mother was found in the master bedroom in a pool of blood.

Jason Young, 37, was arrested in December 2009 in connection with Michelle Young's slaying. He is on trial for a second time after a jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict in his first trial last summer.

Defense attorneys say their client was out of town on business at the time of his wife's death, that there is no physical evidence linking him to the crime and that the case has not been solved.

Prosecutors, however, contend that Jason Young's marriage was in trouble and that he did not want to be married anymore. They allege that he traveled to Hillsville, Va., about three hours from Raleigh, checked into a Hampton Inn hotel and then returned to Raleigh to commit the crime.

Galloway testified that, when he arrived at the home, that Michelle Young was lying on the floor between her bed, Jason Young's closet and a tall dresser. She was on her stomach, with her head in the closet doorway, and her feet were partially under the bed.

There was blood behind the dresser, blood spatter on the wall – from the floor to the ceiling – and blood on the inside and outside of the closet door, he said, as if the door had been closed during the attack.

"It was my opinion that the door had to be shut when she fell against the door, and (she) had to be picked up to actually open the door," Galloway said.

Also on the bottom of the wall near the closet door, Galloway said, he noted a bloody indentation – approximately an inch long – that appeared to be some type of impact mark.

Galloway found a partial palm print on the upper part of the closet doorframe, he said, as well as two other distinct impressions on the wall nearby.

The first impression – 46 inches from the ground and 19 inches from the door – was from an unknown source, he said. The second – 8 inches from the door fame and 56 inches from the ground – appeared to be a fingerprint.

In the bed, Galloway saw blood on the sheets, comforter and pillow. Several decorative pillows on the floor were also bloody.

Galloway said he also found several broken and whole teeth beneath Michelle's Young body and inside the closet.

"I found her face to be horrific – several lacerations, split teeth, missing teeth, lacerations in her scalp," Galloway testified.

Galloway also noted bloody shoeprints on pillows on the floor and on the floor leading away from the body and into the hallway.

In the bathroom across from the bedroom, he said, there were small, bloody footprints and socks on the floor and blood smears on the bottom of the wall.

Investigators believe the footprints are those of the Youngs' daughter, Cassidy, who was 2 at the time. She was found hiding beneath the covers of her father's side of the bed.

In Cassidy's bedroom, Galloway said, he noted that a bottle of adult-strength liquid Tylenol was on a shelf along with a medicine dropper that appeared to have some of the liquid inside of it. Detectives have speculated in search warrants that whoever killed Michelle Young might have used the medicine to make the child drowsy.

The downstairs of the Young home, Galloway said, didn't appear to be disturbed, and there were no signs of forced entry.

Galloway noted blood on the knob on a door to the garage from the kitchen.

Outside the house, he saw a tire track in the mud next to the driveway next to a lamp post by the street. He also noticed a water hose in the backyard running with water leaking from both the spigot and handle.