CRIME

Lululemon murder trial: Employee at neighboring store heard Murray's call for help

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A police crime-scene investigator took the stand Thursday afternoon in the trial of a woman charged with killing a co-worker at a yoga clothing shop in Bethesda.

Norwood's attorneys claim the death of Murray wasn't premeditated, rather it occured during a fight. (Photo: Court sketch)

The investigator explained the collected evidence, pointing to the large amount of blood found across the store. Investigators found blood anywhere from near the cash registers to the kitchen and bathrooms to the stock room and hallways.

Earlier in the day, jurors had seen a recorded police interview with the accused Brittany Norwood. At the start of her first statement to a police detective, Norwood asks, "can you tell me how my friend is doing?"

Prosecutors allege Norwood knew at this time that Jayna Murray was dead. Her lawyer admitted Norwood killed Murray on March 11 in the Bethesda Lululemon store. But when Norwood was questioned that morning, Detective Deana Mackie told the jury she viewed Norwood as a victim.

During the recorded interview played for the jury Thursday, Norwood claimed two men hit Murray. The jury has already seen several photos of Norwood from that morning.

Norwood claimed she and Murray had been beaten and sexually assaulted by two intruders.

She told detectives, “they drug Jayna by her hair. He was repeatedly hitting her and she was screaming and I couldn't do anything."

"I was really praying that someone would see us and help,” Norwood said, according to police. "I just remember there being so much blood."

An employee at the neighboring Apple store heard a woman call out “oh God, please help me." The employee pounded on the wall, but didn’t call 911.

Attorneys for Norwood say Murray was dead within 15 minutes of the beginning of the fight.

A spokesperson for the Maryland attorney general's office said it does not appear anyone at Apple did anything that would rise to the level of criminal liability. Apple did not respond to requests for comment.

During Thursday’s testimony, a police officer displayed Norwood’s clothing, including blood-soaked socks. An emergency room nurse described Norwood's bloody face but said the wounds were superficial. She said she was surprised how blood had flowed down Norwood's nose since Norwood claimed she lay on her back for 10 hours. "A lot of things were odd,” the nurse said.

Earlier this week, Norwood's lawyer admitted that the defendant killed Murray at the Lululemon store in Bethesda in March, but claimed it was during a fight as opposed to premeditated first-degree murder.

Prosecutors say Murray suffered at least 322 wounds from a host of weapons.

 

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