After three days of jury selection, the prosecution began presenting its case on Friday against defendants in the William Taylor murder case.
Commonwealth’s Attorney Karen Greene Blondell began the presentation after opening arguments concluded.
Kentucky State Police Det. Tyson Lawson was one of the first testifying for the commonwealth.
Lawson testified he was dispatched to the home of Rachael and Jeff Daugherty in Frakes the morning of the assault. He testified William Taylor was at the home with abrasions on his head and hands. He also said Taylor was bloody.
Lawson testified Taylor was holding a towel on his head where the injuries were. Taylor told Lawson he had been shot, he said.
Lawson also testified that Taylor claimed Debbie Partin and Candy Maiden were responsible for what he claimed was a shooting event. Taylor also said to Lawson that Maiden and Partin knew who was responsible for the shooting. That came during a cross-examination held by Samuel Cox, Maiden’s lawyer.
After Taylor was transported to the hospital, Lawson and two other police officers investigated the house further, according to Lawson’s testimony. The two other officers were Shane Stewart, who worked with the Pineville Police Department at the time, and Brandon White, who worked with the Bell County Sheriff’s Department.
The officers attempted to locate weapons — a .22-caliber rifle and a .32-caliber pistol — that Taylor claimed was in the house, according to Lawson’s testimony. The weapons were not found.
Lawson testified that during his investigation he did find Taylor’s phone lines were cut.
During opening arguments, Blondell claimed Partin was the individual who cut the lines.
Statements by Maiden and Partin were entered into evidence during Lawson’s testimony as well.
In Maiden’s statement to Lawson, she claimed she was at her place of residence the day of the assault. She also said she knew Taylor and had been to his home previously.
In Maiden’s statement, she said the last time she was at Taylor’s house was two or three weeks prior to the beating. She also said she did not hang around Partin.
In Partin’s statement, she claimed Brian Hatfield and Jeremy Evans dropped her off at Taylor’s house around 7 p.m. and that he loaned her $100. She said she left Taylor’s home no later than 7:12 p.m. and ended the day at Lucas Maiden’s home.
During cross-examination, Lawson testified that Taylor said he did not see the individuals who attacked him.
Cox also pointed out during the cross-examination that Taylor knowing Maiden and Partin were responsible for the attack and the defendants knowing who were responsible for the attacks were two different statements.
The Daugherty family — Rachael, Jeff and Samuel Daugherty — also testified on Friday.
After Taylor was assaulted, he walked to the Daugherty house for help. The family was awaken by their dog on the night of the incident. They found Taylor bloody, wounded and calling for help.
Rachael Daugherty testified she placed towels over Taylor’s wounds, which she had to change several times because of the amount of blood.
Each family member also testified Taylor claimed he had been shot.
When Jeff Daugherty asked Taylor who shot him, Taylor did not answer the question directly, he said.
Jeff Daugherty testified Taylor said Partin and Maiden had been at his residence earlier on the day of the incident to ask if they could stay at his house because their electricity was being cut off. When he told them no, they said he may want to find another place to stay because his house might catch on fire.
During the cross-examination of each family member, Jeff Daugherty, Rachael Daugherty and Samuel Daugherty said Taylor never said Partin or Maiden shot him. The Daughertys also testified Taylor said he did not see who attacked him.
Taylor never mentioned Brian Hatfield’s name when describing the event, according to the Daughertys during questioning from Brent Flowers, one of Hatfield’s attorneys.
The Daughertys also testified they never saw Maiden and Partin together and Taylor never mentioned the two were together on the day the arson threat was made.
The trial is scheduled to resume on Tuesday.
Taylor was brutally beaten during the robbery at his home in the early morning hours of Jan. 15, 2008.
After the robbers fled, Taylor walked more than 100 yards to the nearest neighbor’s house for help.
Taylor was sent to the University of Tennessee Medical Center, where he was initially admitted to the Intensive Care unit. Taylor’s condition was briefly upgraded to stable before being downgraded.
His injuries claimed his life approximately one week after the attack.
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-248-1010, ext. 208, firstname.lastname@example.org