Friday, July 25 2014 10:37 AM EDT2014-07-25 14:37:34 GMT
Saturday August 03: Alexis Murphy left her home in Shipman, Virginia on Saturday evening, reportedly headed for Lynchburg. She tweeted "Burg Bound" to her twitter followers at 3:04 p.m. Saturday. According toFull Story
A timeline of events in the search for Alexis Murphy.Full Story
The trial of Randy Taylor, the man accused in the abduction and murder of 17-year-old Alexis Murphy, resumed Monday in Nelson County Circuit Court. Testimony centered on the bloody evidence the prosecution has against Taylor.
Murphy left her home in Shipman Saturday, August 3, reportedly heading toward Lynchburg. Surveillance video shows her at the Liberty gas station in Lovingston around 7:15 that night. That was the last time she was seen.
No sign of the missing teen sparked pleas from investigators, the FBI, and Murphy’s family. Authorities arrested Taylor, 48, on Sunday, August 11, and charged him with felony abduction in relation to the case. He was charged with first-degree murder on January 6.
Monday forensic experts and investigators testified about what was found during various searches of Taylor’s property. Investigators say a bloody shirt found in Taylor’s camper is the same shirt he was seen wearing on surveillance video at the Liberty gas station at the same time Murphy was last seen. According to an FBI investigator, the shirt was found balled up and pushed "about arm's length under the couch" in Taylor's camper.
The investigator testified that the shirt contained a hair extension and false eyelashes. Forensic specialists found Murphy’s DNA on all of those items. The forensic specialist noted that the shirt, which was navy blue cotton with a Georgetown and Miller Lite logo, had more blood on the back than on the front. Both male and female DNA was found on the shirt. Murphy was found to be a "major contributor" to the DNA from the blood stains and Taylor was found to be a "potential minor contributor" of DNA.
A third source of DNA was not found on the shirt.
Another forensic expert testified that a hair found on Taylor's pillow matched hair on Murphy’s hairbrush, and "exhibited characteristics of being forcibly removed." A diamond stud and a torn fingernail, both with Murphy’s DNA, were also found in Taylor's camper. Blood was found on Taylor's bed sheet, but it did not contain Murphy’s DNA.
Murphy’s Nissan Maxima, which was found in an Albemarle County parking lot days after her disappearance, tested positive for her DNA but not for Taylor's. An unknown male was a major contributor of DNA in the car.
Other items taken from Taylor's camper included a pellet gun and several knives, and cell phone parts. Eleven pornographic movies were found, which an investigator said he would put in the "'barely legal' category.” Two of the movies were believed to have been purchased recently by Taylor.
Monday afternoon a 40-minute taped interview with Taylor was played. In the recording from August 5, Taylor denies having ever seen Murphy. He also denied being at the Liberty gas station on August 3.
In another 40-minute interview, recorded August 7, investigators tell Taylor he was seen on surveillance video in the Liberty gas station talking to Murphy on August 3. Taylor said he had gone four-wheeling in Orange County that day, and that he had no memory of going to the Liberty gas station or talking to Murphy because he'd been drinking. But, Taylor added, he must have been there if he was seen on surveillance video.
Trina Murphy, Alexis Murphy's aunt, said "It is clear that he remembers everything else about that day but he doesn't remember stopping at the Liberty gas station and talking to my niece? That seems odd."
The prosecution called a total of eight witnesses Monday.
The defense argues all of the evidence does not prove abduction or murder. They are pointing the finger at another man who Taylor claims was with him and Murphy the night she was last seen. When the prosecution rests, the defense is expected to call the man Taylor claims was the last one to see Murphy.
Court has adjourned for the day and will resume Tuesday at 9:30 a.m.
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