CLINTON — An East Feliciana Parish jury is scheduled to begin deliberations Thursday in the second-degree murder trial of a Port Hudson woman.
Josie Morgan, 40, is accused in the Dec. 2, 2007, death of Andre Turner, 38, whose beaten and burned body was found in a swampy area off La. 965 near Thompson Creek.
Prosecutors say Morgan, Turner, Jonova Walker and another man were accomplices in the robbery of a bar owner the same day in West Feliciana Parish.
They said Morgan later killed Turner by hitting him with a baseball bat and running over him with her car in East Baton Rouge Parish, then dumped his body and set it on fire.
Morgan had a $25,000 life insurance policy on Turner, who was the father of at least one of her children, Assistant District Attorney Betsy Jones told the jury in closing arguments Wednesday.
Walker, a friend of Morgan who also was indicted in Turner’s slaying, was a key witness against Morgan during the trial.
Defense attorney Benn Hamilton portrayed Walker as a modern-day Medusa, a figure in Greek mythology.
“You can almost see the snakes in her hair,” Hamilton told the jury, adding that detectives from both East and West Feliciana parishes were “manipulated by the Devil Queen herself.”
Hamilton said the state’s case is built on “lies, lies and more lies,” particularly by Walker and Charles Plain, who was charged with obstruction of justice in the case for allegedly misleading detectives early in their investigation.
Walker will be allowed to plead guilty to obstruction of justice to avoid being tried for murder.
“The DA made a deal with the devil and let the murderer slip through their hands,” Hamilton said.
Jones countered that Walker and Plain’s testimony was corroborated by other witnesses, including a state trooper and a landowner where the conspirators stashed a blood-stained car until they had it burned.
Pointing to Morgan, Jones told the jurors, “There’s the murderer. We’re asking you to not let her slip through our hands.”