CRIME

Brittany Norwood Lululemon murder: One year passes since yoga shop murder

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It was one year ago on Sunday night that the Bethesda community was stunned by what, at the time, they thought was the brutal murder of Jayna Murray and the rape of Brittany Norwood inside the city's Lululemon Athletica.

It was a year ago Sunday night that Jayna Murray was found murdered inside the Bethesda Lululemon. (Family photo)

Little did we all know the twists and turns that the case took, leading to Norwood being found guilty of Murray's murder on Nov. 2.

On the night of March 11, 2011, and then the subsequent Saturday morning, Montgomery County Police were calling the murder of the 30-year-old Murray a "random crime of opportunity." They said that another woman, another 27-year-old store employee, had been found bound, beaten and sexually assaulted.

However, a week later, the 27-year-old "victim" had a name - it was Norwood, and on March 18, she was under arrest for Murray's murder.

We now know a year later that Norwood's story eventually unraveled in the eyes of detectives and prosecutors. She was eventually indicted in May, found guilty six months later, and sentenced to life in prison without parole in late January.

“Could you begin to even count the number of times she lied?” asked prosecutor John McCarthy during the trial's closing statements. "It’s almost impossible.”

Throughout the investigation and the trial, Murray's family, including mother Phyllis and father David, tried to transition into what Phyllis called a "new normal."

“There are aspects of this death I cannot accept,” Phyllis said on the day Norwood was sentenced. “Until I can get over the pain and suffering I know my daughter went through, my subconscious will not get over it.”

Throughout the ordeal, though, the Murray family said that their faith, family bond and the memory of Jayna kept them strong.

“We want the world to know how strong of an individual she was," Hugh Murray, Jayna's brother, said. "She was a beautiful person she had already contributed 30 years of beauty to the world,”

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