Archive for the ‘Michelle Young’ Category

Jason Young Trial

For the second time, Jason Young will be tried for the 2006 murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Marie Fisher Young.  The first trial, which was conducted last summer, ended in a mistrial.  Opening statements are set to proceed at 9 a.m. EST tomorrow.  WRAL.com will be live-streaming from the courtroom.  Click the link below to follow the trial on their website.

WRAL.com’s Jason Young Trial page.

LINK to Live-Stream of trial, courtesy of WRAL.com.

Join the discussion at the FPX forum:  LINK

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Jason Young Trial: Back to Square One

Jury selection begins today in a Wake County courtroom for the second trial of Jason Young in the murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Marie Fisher Young.  Jason Young’s first trial ended in a mistrial when twelve juror were unable to reach a unanimous verdict. As such, the prosecution begins anew; jury selection is expected to take several weeks with opening statements due to follow on February 6.  

With the prosecution back at square one, I think it’s an appropriate time to revisit the way in which Michelle Young’s murder was discovered and the investigation began.

Michelle was bludgeoned to death in the bedroom of her Raleigh, North Carolina, home on November 3, 2006. Her body was discovered by her sister, Meredith Fisher, who was sent to the house by Jason Young to retrieve a printout of Coach purses for sale on eBay which he claimed to have forgotten on the printer when leaving for a business trip the prior evening.

Meredith arrived to find things in an unusual state to say the least.  The pillar lights at the end of the driveway were on; the backyard gate was standing open; a water hose was trickling in the backyard; the Youngs’ dog, Mr. Garrison was whining plaintively from within the house, Michelle’s car was in the garage; tiny bloody footprints dappled the floor of an upstairs bathroom.  In the master bedroom,  Michelle’s battered body lay on the floor next to the bed in a pool of blood; the walls and furniture were spattered with blood; and Cassidy, Jason and Michelle’s 2 1/2 year old daughter, was hiding beneath the covers of the bed.  Meredith promptly called 911 to try to get help for her sister, though she feared that Michelle was already dead. 

I have previously posted on this blog a transcript of the 911 call which I typed while listening to the recording on WRAL.com’s website.  However, during the trial last summer, a more complete version of the 911 call was played.  What follows is a transcript of the call as played during Meredith’s testimony.  Please note:  This is not an official transcript.

DISPATCHER: 911 State your emergency

MEREDITH: I need an ambulance. It’s an emergency.

DISPATCHER: What address are you at Ma’am?

MEREDITH: Um Birchleaf…5108 Birchleaf Road

DISPATCHER: Okay and your phone number?

MEREDITH: Oh my God

DISPATCHER: Ma’am, what’s your phone number in case I lose you

MEREDITH: Um…832-…um, hang on. Let me look at the phone. 832-8939. 8939.

DISPATCHER: Alright, what’s the problem. Tell me exactly what happened.

MEREDITH: Um…I…I…I think my sister’s dead.

DISPATCHER: Okay, tell me what happened, ma’am.

MEREDITH: I have no idea. Oh my God.

DISPATCHER: Alright stay on the phone with me please.

MEREDITH: Um.

DISPATCHER: What’s your name?

MEREDITH: Meredith Fisher

DISPATCHER: Alright, Meredith.

MEREDITH: And this is the Young address. Oh my God.

DISPATCHER: Meredith, listen to me please.

MEREDITH: Yeah.

DISPATCHER: Are you with the patient now?

MEREDITH: Yes and her daughter. And…she’s…

DISPATCHER: Okay, how old is the patient?

MEREDITH: …and there’s blood everywhere. She’s 28…29

DISPATCHER: 28?

MEREDITH: Should I try to move her?

DISPATCHER: Listen to me, ma’am.

MEREDITH: Yes sir.

DISPATCHER: I’m gonna tell you what to do…

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: …but you need to calm down so we can help her. You said there’s blood everywhere?

MEREDITH: Yes.

DISPATCHER: Alright. Is she conscious?

MEREDITH: N…, I don’t think so. Should I try to help her?

DISPATCHER: Listen to me, ma’am.

MEREDITH: I’m listening.

DISPATCHER: Is she breathing?

MEREDITH: I don’t think so.

DISPATCHER: Have you checked?

MEREDITH: Michelle? [pause] She’s cold.

DISPATCHER: Okay. Listen to me. Did you see what happened?

MEREDITH: I don’t know. Cassidy, come here, sweetie. I’m here with her daughter.

DISPATCHER: Okay.

MEREDITH: There’s…there’s like blood footprints all over the house from her daughter…like her daughter’s little footprints.

DISPATCHER: Okay, listen to me. What’s your first name?

MEREDITH: Meredith

DISPATCHER: Alright, Meredith…

MEREDITH: Yes sir.

DISPATCHER: Did you see what happened?

MEREDITH: I..I..I just came here on a fluke. I usually, you know, don’t come here during the day.

DISPATCHER: Okay.

MEREDITH: She shouldn’t be home. She should be at work. Like…

DISPATCHER: Okay, listen to me.

MEREDITH: Yes sir.

MEREDITH: I…I…[inaudible] right now.

DISPATCHER: Did you say…Can you tell me why she looks dead…looks like she’s dead?

MEREDITH: I don’t know. I have no idea. There’s blood all over the place.

DISPATCHER: Okay, did you say she’s cold?

MEREDITH: Sh..uh yes.

DISPATCHER: Okay.

MEREDITH: Yes.

DISPATCHER: Alright, stay on the phone.

MEREDITH: Okay

CASSIDY: [inaudible] there’s blood. Can you see my…[inaudible]…get a washcloth into my…[inaudible]…?

MEREDITH: Yes, sweetie.

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

MEREDITH: Sweetie, do you know what happened to Mommy?

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

MEREDITH: Did she fall?

CASSIDY: Um…um…she gotta boo…She got boo-boos everywhere and…and…she got…

DISPATCHER: Alright, do you think she’s beyond any help?

MEREDITH: I don’t know. Honestly, um…

DISPATCHER: You don’t know? Alright

MEREDITH: I’m normally very good under pressure.

DISPATCHER: Okay, we’re gonna tell you what to do then. Okay?

MEREDITH: Yes, sir.

DISPATCHER: Are you right by her now?

MEREDITH: I…I’m keeping her daughter out of there.

DISPATCHER: Okay. Alright, so you’re not with her?

MEREDITH: I’m right outside the bedroom.

DISPATCHER: Can you get her daughter secured s…Can you carry the phone to where she’s at?

MEREDITH: Yes.

DISPATCHER: Alright. Can you secure her daughter?

MEREDITH: Cassidy, sweetie, can you stay in your room for two seconds, okay?

CASSIDY: Okay.

MEREDITH: Okay, can you close the door for two seconds and I’ll be right back in here, okay, sweetie?

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: Meredith.

MEREDITH: Okay, yes sir.

DISPATCHER: Okay. You got a cordless phone?

MEREDITH: Yes.

DISPATCHER: Alright.

MEREDITH: Stay right there, sweetie. Okay.

DISPATCHER: Alright, is…I want you to…is she laying on her back?

MEREDITH: No, she’s laying on her stomach.

DISPATCHER: She’s on her stomach? She’s face down?

MEREDITH: Yes.

DISPATCHER: Alright, can you…can you get her on her back?

MEREDITH: [deep breath] okay…oh my God. Michelle? I don’t think so. She’s so heavy.

DISPATCHER: Alright, see if you can get her on her back.

MEREDITH: I just really think she’s dead.

DISPATCHER: Pardon?

MEREDITH: I really think she’s dead.

DISPATCHER: Okay. Are you certain?

MEREDITH: Hang on. Cassidy, sweetie, please go in your room. Okay, honey?

MEREDITH: I um…I um…I’m pretty sure.

DISPATCHER: You are?

MEREDITH: I…I don’t know…I don’t know. I’m…

DISPATCHER: Okay, we need to make sure.

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: Can you get her on her back for me?

MEREDITH: She’s kind of…twisted in a way that I can’t do that.

DISPATCHER: You can’t roll her over.

MEREDITH: Not…not easily.

DISPATCHER: You’re gonna have to try.

MEREDITH: Hang on…let me…I’m trying to see if I can get her pulse.

DISPATCHER: We gotta try to do CPR if we can get her on her back, Meredith.

MEREDITH: No, she’s ice cold.

DISPATCHER: She’s cold?

MEREDITH: Yeah.

DISPATCHER: Okay, alright.

MEREDITH: And her body is stiff.

DISPATCHER: Okay, then don’t try. If she’s cold then just…

MEREDITH: Oh my God, I (inaudible)…

DISPATCHER: …there’s probably nothing much you can do.

MEREDITH: Should I not touch anything?

DISPATCHER: Alright, try not to touch anything more than you did. Was anything out of place or unusual when you came in?

MEREDITH: This place does not look like what it normally looks like.

DISPATCHER: Okay, what’d it…

MEREDITH: There’s blood in the bed.

DISPATCHER: Okay, alright. Try not to touch anything else, okay?

MEREDITH: Okay, I just moved a pillow.

DISPATCHER: Alright. Just leave everything exactly where it is then.

MEREDITH: Okay…okay.

DISPATCHER: Do you see anything else?

MEREDITH: Um…

DISPATCHER: Do you see anything else that looks unusual?

MEREDITH: No. Cassidy, was anybody here? The dog was freaking out when I got here. Was anybody here, sweetie?

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

DISPATCHER: Alright, Meredith…

MEREDITH: Yes, sir.

DISPATCHER: Alright, I’m gonna…I’m gonna get the sheriff’s department to pick up on the line with us.

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: ‘Cause they’re gonna need to talk to you about what you’re seeing. Okay?

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: Now, I’m gonna brief them on what’s happened, and you just stay on the line.

MEREDITH: Okay.

DISPATCHER: What’s your last name, Meredith?

MEREDITH: Fisher.

DISPATCHER: Fisher?

MEREDITH: Her last name is Young.

DISPATCHER: Are you her relative?

MEREDITH: I’m her only sister.

DISPATCHER: Okay. Alright, Meredith. Stay with me just a minute, okay?

MEREDITH: Okay.

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

[series of clicks and tones]

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

MEREDITH: Okay.

[ring-tone]

CASSIDY: [inaudible] { some people believe they hear the words, “Daddy did it.”}

MEREDITH: Okay.

CASSIDY: [inaudible]

[ring-tone]

[ring-tone]

DEPUTY: Sheriff’s office. What is your emergency?

DISPATCHER: Hey, this is uh Brent.

DEPUTY: Uh-huh?

DISPATCHER: Look, I’ve got a lady named Meredith Fisher on the line from this address.

DEPUTY: Okay.

DISPATCHER: We’ve got EMS en route to Birchleaf.

DEPUTY: Okay.

DISPATCHER: And she…she’s in there with her sister. Um, she’s gonna tell you about what she’s seen, and it’s apparent it might be a Code 7 and there may be…there is evidence of trauma.

DEPUTY: We got deputies already en route.

DISPATCHER: Okay, but you need to talk to her. I’m gonna let her talk to you.

DEPUTY: I will. Thanks.

DISPATCHER: She’s on the line with you.

DEPUTY: Okay.

DISPATCHER: Meredith, go ahead.

DEPUTY: Meredith?

MEREDITH: I’m also here with her two-and-a-half-year-old, so it’s kind of difficult for me to pay attention.

DEPUTY: Okay.

MEREDITH: Okay?

DEPUTY: Where are you at now though Meredith? Are you on Birchleaf?

MEREDITH: [inaudible] downstairs. I’m at Birch, um, 5108 Birchleaf.

DEPUTY: Okay.

MEREDITH: Um, I…I typically handle myself very well under pressure, but I…I…I don’t know what to do.

DEPUTY: Okay. Now, tell…uh, is Rescue there yet?

MEREDITH: No.

DEPUTY: Okay.

MEREDITH: Should I go outside to wait for them…[inaudible]?

DEPUTY: Now, what have you found when you walked in the house?

MEREDITH: I don’t kn… I almost thought it was a practical joke. There’s just blood everywhere.

DEPUTY: Okay. And who lives there, and are they there?

MEREDITH: Okay. It’s my sister’s house.

DEPUTY: Uh-huh.

MEREDITH: Um, and she has a husband that travels quite a bit.

DEPUTY: Uh-huh.

MEREDITH: And I spoke with him last night. He’s out of town; he’s on his way to his parents’ house. And her daughter [inaudible] still in pajamas. [inaudible] Like normally, my sister goes to work early and takes her to daycare, you know, like…something’s not right. And I…when I first came to the house…[exhaling sound]

DEPUTY: Could you hold on one second for me, Miss?

MEREDITH: Yes, sir.

DEPUTY: Mm-hmm.

**Transition—Call transferred**

MEREDITH: Yes, sir.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. Are you…are you out at the…the deceased person’s…Birchleaf?

MEREDITH: I’m sorry.

DEPUTY 2: Are you out on Birchleaf?

MEREDITH: Birchleaf. Yes, sir.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. Okay. What I need you to do if possible… Who…who all’s there with you? I can hear a child.

MEREDITH: Yes.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. EMS and I got some deputies en route. What I need you to go ahead and do is just…is walk outside.

MEREDITH: Okay.

DEPUTY 2: ‘Cause I don’t know what’s going on yet. Just have everybody walk outside. Stand…[inaudible]

MEREDITH: Come on, sweetie. Let’s take a ride. Okay? Come on, Garrison. Let’s go, buddy.

CASSIDY: Where we going?

MEREDITH: We’re going to go outside and wait for the nice people to [inaudible]

DEPUTY 2: And if you want…if you want to, yeah, if you want to, go ahead out…go out to your car and sit in your car. That way…until we figure out what’s going on, okay?

MEREDITH: Okay. I don’t know what I did with my keys. I can’t even think.

CASSIDY: Where we going?

MEREDITH: [inaudible] We’re going to wait outside for the nice people to come talk to us. Okay, sweetie?

DEPUTY 2: Who’s this…who’s this person you…

MEREDITH: Um, this is my niece that I’m holding right now.

DEPUTY 2: No, I mean…I mean the person who’s in the house? Your sister?

**Cassidy chattering in background**

MEREDITH: Oh my God.

CASSIDY: [inaudible] your car?

MEREDITH: Yes, sweetie. That’s my car.

MEREDITH: I’m trying.

DEPUTY 2: Yeah. Just do the best you can. I know…I know it’s difficult. I really do.

MEREDITH: My niece is very smart for her age. She’s two and a half. And I think she’s saying that there was somebody in the house. I don’t really understand, ‘cause I know she doesn’t understand.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. How old is…how old is, um, your sister?

MEREDITH: My sister’s twenty-nine.

DEPUTY 2: Twenty-nine? [inaudible] have any problems?

MEREDITH: What?

DEPUTY 2: …that you know of? Do you have…Does she have any personal problems that you know of?

MEREDITH: Um, not really. I try to help them fight a little bit, but nothing too ridiculous. She’s pregnant; I know that. She’s about four and a half months pregnant.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. Try to…try to keep calm.

MEREDITH: [inaudible] I’m trying. There’s a fire department truck here.

DEPUTY 2: Okay.

MEREDITH: I don’t know why, but…

DEPUTY 2: Yeah, they…they respond as well because of the nature of the call.

MEREDITH: [inaudible—crosstalk] I’m trying. Oh my God. Oh my God. I can’t even believe that this is real. Like, they sort of play jokes on each other, like, [inaudible] her husband. Like, I almost thought it was a joke; that’s how over the top it just seems in there. Something’s not right.

DEPUTY 2: The fire department’s going to talk to you now. They’ll probably go in the house to go check on her. Okay?

MEREDITH: Okay. Thank you.

DEPUTY 2: Okay. So just…they’ll let me know if there’s any problem. Okay? Just stay out of the house as best you can.

MEREDITH: Thank you. Yes. Thank you.

DEPUTY 2: Okay.

Jason Young: Verdict Watch

Testimony in the trial of Jason Young for the first degree murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Marie Fisher Young, wrapped up yesterday.  Defense attorneys and prosecutors presented their closing arguments to the jury today, and the fate of Jason Young is now in the hands of twelve jurors. 

As fate would have it, the forum we have been using to discuss the trial is down for maintenance.  In the meantime, I’ve opened a Verdict Watch thread at our original forum.

Original Forum:  Friction Powered Information Exchange
Alternate Forum:  FPX II (temporarily down for maintenance)

Update:

FPX II is back online.  We’ll continue the discussion there.  Sorry for any confusion.

Jason Young Trial

http://wwwcache.wral.com/presentation/v2/flash/video/vp-wral.swf?v=20100913a

Discussion of the trial has been moved to FPX II due to ongoing technical difficulties at the original FPX.

Jason Young Trial: Jury Selection

Jury selection begins today in the First Degree Murder trial of Jason Young who stands accused of murdering his pregnant wife, Michelle Young, in November, 2006.  The process is expected to take about three to four days with Opening Statements to follow.  WRAL will stream live coverage of the trial on their website.
I have begun to assemble a dedicated page to facilitate following the trial as it progresses.  The page will be updated as necessary.  Click the link below or in the sidebar to access the Michelle Young Case page.

Michelle Young Case

 

Discussion of the case and trial coverage is being hosted at the original Friction Powered Exchange forum. 

 http://frictionpowered.hqforums.com/

 If you are still having trouble accessing the forum, please leave a comment on this blog entry.

Jason Young Arraignment

Jason Young will be arraigned in a Wake County, North Carolina, courtroom today for the 2006 beating death of his pregnant wife, Michelle Young.  Also on the agenda is an evidence hearing regarding a witness sighting of Jason Young at a King, North Carolina convenience store during the early morning hours of November 3, 2006.  Proceedings are scheduled to begin at 2:30.  Local poster, RPD, plans to be at the hearing and post his observations.

Because of problems at our regular forum, Friction Powered Exchange, I’ve reopened the alternative forum, Friction Powered Exchange II.  If you haven’t already registered there, I would encourage you to do so.  There have been so many problems with FPX lately that I’m not sure we’ll be able to rely on it for the duration of the trial.

Michelle Young Murder: King’s to you, Jason.*

The trial of Jason Young for the 2006 murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Young, is quickly approaching.  Yesterday, a status hearing was held in preparation for trial.  Normally, this would have been a rather mundane event.  However, yesterday’s hearing produced some interesting news.  Jason Young’s defense counsel used the opportunity to raise issue with a witness for the prosecution.  Gracie Bailey, a convenience store clerk in King, North Carolina, identified Jason Young as a customer who made a cash purchase of fuel at her store at 5:27 am on November 3, 2006. 

The significance of this is that it places Jason on the route between his Raleigh home and his hotel in Hillsville, Virginia, during the hours that he was supposed to have been innocently spending the night at the hotel halfway to his business meeting destination of Clintwood, Virginia.  Until this piece of evidence was made public, we knew only that there was surveillance video from the hotel indicating that he had left his hotel around midnight and a witness statement describing the presence of a vehicle similar to Jason’s 2004 Ford Explorer in the driveway of the Youngs’ home between 4:00 and 5:00 am.  And we knew that, in order to make the return trip to Raleigh in the middle of the night to kill Michelle, he would have needed more fuel than provided by the documented purchases at the Handee Hugo in Raleigh at 7:32 pm on November 2 and the Get-It Market at 12:06 pm the following day.  With this witness’s testimony, the State will be able to show, not only that Jason Young could have returned to Raleigh in the middle of the night, but that he did, in fact, make that murderous drive.

Clicking on the map will link you to the interactive Bing map for greater detail and exploration.

According to RPD, a Raleigh local who attended yesterday’s hearing, the defense’s motion to suppress Gracie Bailey’s testimony will be heard on May 19.  The defense alleges that WCSO procedure was not followed in procuring the witness’s identification of Jason Young.  The trial is scheduled to begin on May 31.  Thanks for your updates, RPD.

The timeline calendar has also been updated with this new information.  Click the following link to direct your browser there:

Michelle Young Murder Timeline

*With my gratitude to the Count of Monte Cristo.

Jason’s Journey: Extra Fuel and the Lost Highway

Note:  For those of you already familiar with the case, pardon me while I recap.  For those not familiar, there is a great deal more to read about this case in the search warrants and in previously posted blog entries on this site.

Michelle Young was murdered in her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, on November 3, 2006, sometime between midnight and 6:00 am.  The pregnant mother was attacked in her bedroom and beaten to death with a blunt object.  Cassidy, the Youngs’ 2 1/2 year old daughter, was left unharmed in the home.  The murder was discovered by Michelle’s sister, Meredith Fisher, who was sent to the scene on an errand by Michelle’s husband, Jason. Jason Young’s alibi is that he was out of town on a business trip when his wife was murdered.  Nevertheless, a grand jury indicted him on charges of first degree murder in December of 2009, and he is due to stand trial in May of this year.

Jason Young left home on Thursday, November 2, 2006, stopping at the Handee Hugo convenience store where he fueled up his Ford Explorer at 7:32 pm before setting off.  His meeting was scheduled for 10:00 am the following morning at Dickenson Community Hospital in Clintwood, Virginia.  After driving about 80 miles, Young stopped to eat a late supper at the Cracker Barrel restaurant in Greensboro, North Carolina.  At approximately 10:50 pm, Young rented a room for the night at the Hampton Inn in Hillsville, Virginia.  About an hour later, Young is seen again in the hotel lobby, this time in different clothing than he was wearing upon arrival.  Search warrants indicate that investigators believe Young tampered with a stairwell security camera, a side exit door, and the door to his room before leaving the hotel around midnight to return to Raleigh and commit the murder. 

As previously stated, Jason’s Thursday morning meeting was scheduled to begin at 10:00 am.  However, he arrived more than half an hour late at 10:35 am.  A cell phone ping indicated that he was just southwest of Wytheville Virginia at 7:40 am — approximately 112 miles from his destination.  Using Bing Maps calculations, he should have arrived at Dickenson Community Hospital by 9:50 am — a couple of hours later, yet it took him nearly three hours.  Reportedly, Jason told friends the reason that he was late was because he got lost.  This lost time translates to perhaps 30-50 additional miles of driving.

The following images show a possible scenario for Jason’s lost time and mileage.  On the map, the route A-E-C is the route Jason should have taken from Abingdon, Virginia, where he left I-81, to Dickenson Community Hospital in Clintwood.  Missing the left turn at marker E would have sent him off his intended route.  Depending on how long it took him to realize his mistake, he would have had to work his way back toward Clintwood on the E-D-C route.

[Click to enlarge]
The missed turn

As you can see from the above image, it would have been easy for someone unfamiliar with the area to mistakenly continue on through the intersection rather than turning left here, as it appears that turning left would have resulted in traveling southwest whereas the direction (as the crow flies) to Clintwood is northwest.

Credit card receipts found in Young’s vehicle indicate that he purchased fuel at the Handee Hugo in Raleigh on Thursday evening and again at the Get-It Market in Duffield, Virginia, on Friday at 12:06 pm.  The route that Young would have traveled from the Handee Hugo to Dickenson Community Hospital and on to his fuel stop in Duffield is approximately 363 miles.  You could argue that this distance is doable on one tank of gas in a 2004 Ford Explorer, but you would have to ignore both the mountainous terrain that would surely have reduced his fuel efficiency and the extra miles Jason would have added to his route during the time that he was lost en route to Clintwood.  This gas mileage discrepancy supports investigators’ belief that Young made at least one additional fuel purchase between 7:32 pm on Thursday and 12:06 pm on Friday for which there is no documentation. 

Now, if you’re doing the calculations in your head, you’ve probably figured out that he needed only a few extra gallons of fuel to complete his route.  However, it would have taken almost an entire extra tank for Jason Young to drive back to Raleigh from Hillsville in the middle of the night to murder his wife and return again to the Hampton Inn the next morning — approximately 344 roundtrip miles.  The question arises, where and when did he refuel?  It probaby won’t surprise you to learn that I’ve been studying maps and satellite images and have come up with a theory.

Question: How do you purchase fuel without investigators being able to track down the secret fuel purchase later? There are four things that you would need to consider:

  1. Use cash or a prepaid card to avoid producing records that could track the purchase to you.
  2. Purchase the fuel at a location where you aren’t likely to be recognized by someone who knows you or remembered later by someone who happened to see you there.
  3. Pick a location that wouldn’t be immediately checked by investigators.  In other words, don’t buy gas near the murder scene nor near your hotel.
  4. Cover your tracks.  Your cell phone pings will tell on you. 

I’ve long been bothered by Jason’s late evening stop at the Cracker Barrel restaurant.  It’s always seemed odd that he declined to eat with Michelle, Cassidy, and Michelle’s friend, Shelly Schaad, prior to leaving home, opting instead to stop and eat at a restaurant little more than an hour down the road at such a late hour. 

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and Restaurant

I’ve come to believe that the real purpose for the Cracker Barrel stop was to mask an extra fuel stop.  If investigators later wondered why his cell phone records indicated that he stopped in Greensboro, his meal at the Cracker Barrel would have been a reasonable explanation, and investigators would have had no reason to suspect that he bought more fuel again so soon after the Handee Hugo purchase.  Mind you, it would have taken only about five gallons of gas to top off his tank at that time.  However, it would have enabled him to get at least that far away from Raleigh after the murder before he needed to refuel again.  That’s the important part.  Keep in mind that during the post-murder fuel stop, Jason would not have needed to worry about covering his cell phone tracks because he had either turned off the phone or left it in his hotel room … perhaps both.

Greensboro stop:  (1) Cracker Barrel, (2) Sheetz

Incidentally, if Jason had left this location with a full tank of gas after the murder, he would have had enough fuel to make it all the way to his meeting in Clintwood and on to the Duffield fuel stop even if he had gotten lost and added an extra hour onto his drive.  At exit 124 in Greensboro (the exit Jason would have used to get to the Cracker Barrel) there is also a big convenience store that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Sheetz convenience store

Sheetz convenience stores offer a prepaid gift card in denominations of $10 to $100 in $5 increments.  The Sheetz Z-Card can be used to pay for fuel at the pump.  Being able to pay at the pump rather than going inside to make a cash purchase would have been to Jason’s great benefit in covering his tracks.  Recall that Jason’s mother, Pat Young, relayed to Wake County Sheriff’s investigators that a wallet with $500 cash was missing from Jason’s closet after Michelle’s murder.

Z-Card can be used to pay at the pump 24/7.

If my theory is correct, Jason would have made a small purchase of gas at the Sheetz store some time between 8:45 pm and 9:30 pm on Thursday evening and a much larger purchase the next morning between 5:00 and 5:45 am.  There are a few alternatives to consider regarding these purchases:

  1. He used cash at the register on Thursday evening to pay for the gas and also to buy a prepaid Z-Card to use for the post-murder refuel.
  2. On both occasions, he used a Z-Card at the pump that he had procured prior to November 2.
  3. He used cash at the register on Thursday evening but reserved the previously procured Z-Card for the post-murder refuel. 

Store records should be examined to look for cash and Z-Card purchases during those times.  If the same Z-Card was used to make both purchases, it would add to the pile of circumstantial evidence already in the hands of prosecutors.  If a Z-Card was purchased with cash at the time of the 5-gallon refuel and then used the next morning to purchase around 20 gallons of gas, this would also be evidence that would implicate Jason Young.  And if the Z-Card was purchased on another date at another location, it’s possible that other records — credit card, cell phone, etc. — could be used to place Jason at that location on that date thereby tying Jason to the Z-Card purchases.

Jason Young: Rule 24 Hearing

Today at 3:20 pm, Jason Young will learn whether or not he faces the death penalty for the 2006 murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Marie Fisher Young.  Anyone interested in the proceedings can follow timely updates on the FPX forum courtesy of two forum members local to Raleigh, namely RPD and gorealtors.

Click HERE to proceed to the FPX forum.

Update:

In case you haven’t already been made aware, the prosecutor announced today that the death penalty will not be sought against Jason Young.  With that decision, the most severe sentence that can be imposed is life without the possibility of parole.  Jury selection is scheduled to begin on May 16, 2011.  In the meantime, expect more hearings to address motions to suppress evidence, change of venue, etc.

Michelle Young Case Update

This update is slightly dated, but I thought it might be helpful for those searching for news about Jason Young.  Jason is currently in the Wake County jail awaiting trial for the 2006 murder of his pregnant wife, Michelle Marie Fisher Young.  Young was indicted by a Wake County grand jury on December 14, 2009, and arrested in Brevard the same day.  Since that time, two hearings have been continued.  A Rule 24 hearing originally scheduled for March 18, 2010 — at which time the district attorney was to have notified the court as to whether or not the death penalty would be sought — was continued.  The case was again continued on June 17 with the delay attributed to the state’s need for more time to sort through all of the evidence against Jason Young and turn everything over to Young’s defense team.  The next court date is August 26, at which time, the prosecution must without further delay present the court with their intentions regarding the death penalty. 

Click HERE for the latest news report.