The story of Jayna Murray’s gruesome death arises again three years after her murder. Convicted killer Brittany Norwood is appealing to the courts for a second trial.
Norwood claims she was not read her Miranda rights before police interviewed her and video footage of those interviews was used by prosecutors,
Norwood, 31, was convicted in January 2012 of cutting, stabbing, and bludgeoning co-worker Murray, 30, over 330 times -- with at least six weapons according to WJLA -- at the Bethesda Lululemon store in 2011.
Patch first reported on the story in October 2011. According to the story, the confrontation began when Murray discovered Norwood had stolen a pair of yoga pants from the store. Norwood confirmed in a phone conversation with her brother that she knew Murray suspected her of theft.
Norwood had elaborately staged the crime scene to make it seem as if she and Murray had been attacked.
Another Patch story reported that Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said Norwood had worn a pair of size 14 shoes from the store, tracked bloody footprints throughout the store in them, then cleaned the shoes and tied herself up using her teeth.
When Norwood and Murray were both found at the back of the store -- Murray was dead -- Norwood claimed that both women had been sexually assaulted by unknown attackers, according to WJLA.
“You are one hell of a liar, ma’am,” Judge Robert A. Greenberg said to Norwood during her sentencing, according to a
third Patch story about the trial.
Unfortunately for Norwood, her elaborate tale fell apart during police interviews when her later claims did not match previous statements.
“I think the interviews were critical to us, and what you saw was an evolving story,” Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said,
according to NBC Washington. “What was being told to us the first day she was found and those first two interviews was not what she was saying the following Friday. It was the evolution of the story and when you can see these things side by side, members of the public will get to see what the police saw and see those inconsistencies, not the least of which was it wasn’t until the fourth interview on March 16 that she admits for the first time that she had actually moved Jayna’s car at the insistence of the supposed killers.”
These very interviews are now the basis for which Norwood is asking for a second trial.
"She was not in custody,” McCarthy said of the interviews in question, according to WJLA. “These convictions will stand.”
A Patch story on Norwood’s sentencing reports that Norwood apologized to Murray’s family, saying she was “deeply sorry.”
“For the Murray family -- what do I say when your daughter’s gone and I’m the one convicted of her murder? I know what I say today won’t take the pain away over the loss of Jayna,” Norwood said at the time.
The Murray family and friends gave statements during the sentencing, detailing the impact that Murray’s death had on them.
“This act has done more than take away an amazing, beautiful woman from this world,” said Murray’s boyfriend, Fraser Bocell, who had been looking at engagement rings. “All of my plans for the future were shattered and laid bare on that day.”
Judge Greenberg pounded his fist on the dais 330 times at the sentencing -- once for each swing Norwood had taken at Murray.
“After every blow, you had a chance to think about what you were doing,” Greenberg told Norwood.
Norwood was sentenced to a lifetime in prison for first-degree murder with no possibility of parole.
In response to her plea for the chance at parole, Greenberg said, “I am exceedingly reluctant to grant you even the slightest chance of doing this to another member of the community.”
According to WJLA, Norwood’s appeal could be heard in court as early as September.
For more detailed information on the murder, check out these previous Patch stories: