Michelle Young

State can appeal Jason Young case to NC Supreme Court

Posted August 20, 2014 2:38 p.m. EDT
Updated August 20, 2014 2:47 p.m. EDT

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.