Arizona murder case against US Air Force airman goes to jury

2021-10-08 18:10:04 –

Flagstaff, Arizona — Who saw Sasha Klaus taken from the Menonite community in northwestern New Mexico, worked for the Ministry of Publishing, dominated by card games and table tennis, and her poetry became a song? There was no one.

In northern Arizona, a quiet, passive woman was killed hours later, with a gunshot wound on the back of her head, her wrists tied up with duct tape, and placed in the terrible cold between pine needles. There was no one.

Prosecutor Ammon Barker said on Friday that cell phone data, receipts, financial records, repetitive lies, and concealment work pointed to Mark Gooch, a U.S. Air Force airman stationed in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Claimed to be. According to Barker, Gooch was driven by a grudge against the faith he grew up in Wisconsin.

“If you look at the evidence through reason, common sense, and experience, you’ll find that the defendant is guilty, beyond reasonable doubt,” Barker told the jury in closing arguments.

Gooch’s lawyer, Bruce Griffen, argued that there was reason to suspect that Gooch had killed Klaus. He is owned by Gooch with a lack of forensic evidence, another car found in the Mennonite community, and a bullet taken from Klaus’s skull. From a ballistics expert on whether a bullet was fired from a 22 caliber rifle. He pointed out different opinions.

“The wrong gun, the wrong bullet, the wrong car,” Griffen said. “How is it summed? The wrong person. You have to deal with the objective evidence we have that creates reasonable doubt. Reasonable doubt cannot be ignored. “

Twelve juries began deliberations on Friday afternoon.

Gooch faces life imprisonment if he is convicted of first-class murder and kidnapping for Klaus’ death. Her disappearance on January 18, 2020 began a desperate search. The camper was finally near Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, collecting firewood in the same clothes, gray dress, lab coat, and hiking shoes that Klaus wore when he went missing. I found her.

There is no sign that Klaus and Gooch knew each other, or that Klaus fought. Their family is part of a conservative group of Mennonites who are modestly dressed, reject most forms of technology, and practice nonviolence and non-resistance. Gooch has never officially joined the church.

Both of their parents were in court for trial. Klaus’s mother frowned and turned her back when Barker showed her daughter a photo for the jury during closing arguments. Gooch’s parents had an emotional exchange with his son’s lawyer.

27-year-old Klaus taught in Texas, where his family still lives, before moving to the Farmington Mennonite community, which is spelled “lamp + light” on the white rocks on the sides of the mesa. Klaus worked for the Ministry of Publishing, which bears its name. One of her sisters previously lived in Farmington.

When she went missing, Klaus was collecting items for Sunday School.

22-year-old Gooch told a sheriff detective that he was in Farmington that day to confirm the time of worship at the church because he missed the fellowship of Mennonites. According to Barker, his estimates of the time he spent traveling did not match cell phone data, financial records, and surveillance videos.

Barker argued that Gooch wasn’t just swaying by the church, as he said. He spent more than three hours near the church, bypassing the interstate highway for two hours in the area where Klaus’s body was found. Mr. Gooch later deleted the location history from his cell phone, purchased bleach, looked up the details of the car, and asked his colleagues to store the rifle, Barker said.

According to prosecutors, Gooch’s phone was the only device that communicated with the same tower as Klaus’s phone before her signal fell west of Farmington. Barker said he displayed a text message exchange between Gooch and his brother, showing that Gooch had a general contempt for Mennonites.

“According to all the explanations we heard at the trial, Sasha Klaus was the light, the light to her family, her community, the world,” Barker said. “And this defendant sniffed it.”

Glyphen told the jury that Gooch voluntarily worked with the detective and was non-violent. He argued that cell phone data was scientifically weak and could not indicate a particular activity. He said the two text message exchanges that recently referred to Mennonites did not mean that Gooch was guilty.

He then asked the jury if someone who tried to perform a secret mission used a cell phone or credit card to leave the truck.

“He doesn’t do anything about them, he doesn’t try to avoid any of them,” Griffen said. “It’s all inconsistent with the state’s suggestion that he’s a man.”

Arizona murder case against US Air Force airman goes to jury Source link Arizona murder case against US Air Force airman goes to jury

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