Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by laga on Thu Jul 07, 2011 10:56 am

It's 9:00 in Oregon...Thinking of you Cory! Sending all the positive vibes your way! Love you!

Imagine a candle burning here ( )

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 1:35 pm

The judge in the Nick McGuffin murder trial has ordered sheriff's deputies to block photography of jurors.
The order came after a Myrtle Point man took pictures of potential jurors Wednesday outside the courthouse. In a video he later posted to YouTube, deputies confronted Phil Logan-Kelly on a sidewalk outside the courthouse, where he was taking pictures of potential jurors as they left for lunch.
Before deputies escorted Logan-Kelly off courthouse property, one deputy asked him, 'Why are you taking pictures of the jurors?"
'Because I can," Logan-Kelly replied. 'I'm in public, they are in public, I can take pictures."
Actually, he can't.
Coos County Circuit Court Judge Richard Barron has ordered that no juror be photographed anywhere while the trial is under way.
The rule isn't new. The Oregon Uniform Trial Court Rules -- the rules judges follow while conducting trials in Oregon -- states there shall be no 'public access coverage" of 'any juror anywhere during the course of the trial in which he or she sits."
Public access coverage includes any photo or video inside or outside the courtroom. These rules apply equally to news media and private citizens.
'Today I was exercising my First Amendment right in front of the courthouse in Coquille," Logan-Kelly wrote in an email to The World.
'A wile (sic) later, a deputy came to my door telling me that Judge Barron has ordered me to stop taking pictures in front of the courthouse. Thus, he is violating my First Amendment Rights."
In the video, Logan-Kelly refused to give deputies his name or show them ID.
Once he affirmed the deputies were not detaining him, Logan-Kelly walked to his car. The deputies followed him.
'You positively cannot take photos of the jurors, period," Coos County District Attorney R. Paul Frasier told reporters later that day. 'You will get prosecuted."
According to Logan-Kelly's YouTube account, he is a 70-year-old retiree and part-time school bus driver.
A few hours later, around 3 p.m., the selected jury was taken on a bus tour of Coquille to the locations Frasier will discuss during the trial.
Jury selection, also called voir dire, took almost two days, which Frasier said is normal for a high-profile murder trial.
The court had more than 100 jurors standing by to ensure a unbiased jury could be selected. Barron and the lawyers screened more than 70 potential jurors before seating 12 jurors and two alternates.
Opening statements began at 9 this morning.

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Normal ♥Leah's mom, Cory, in court today♥

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 3:28 pm

Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29 - Page 20 Corytrial

The last time Cory Courtright saw her 15-year-old daughter Leah Freeman, the girl had some welcome news for her mother.

"I told her how she needs to spend more time with friends and less time with Nick," Courtright said from a witness stand in the Coos County Courthouse Thursday morning.

"She said, 'I am going to take your advice, Mom.' Then she jumped up, kissed me on the cheek and said, 'I love you, mommy.'"

Courtright's testimony came during the opening day of the first-degree murder trial of Nick McGuffin. He is the same young man Courtright warned her daughter about more than 11 years ago.
The teenage girl disappeared the night of June 28, 2000, while walking home from her friend Sherrie Mitchell's house, just blocks from her own home. She had spent much of the day with McGuffin, then 18. Then she left to spend time with Mitchell. McGuffin was to pick Freeman up later that night, but after getting into an argument with Mitchell, an upset Freeman struck out on foot.

McGuffin later told police he spent the night looking for his girlfriend, but never found her.

Later that night, one of Freeman's Nike shoes was found near a local cemetery. The second shoe -- blood splattered -- was found July 4, 2000, on a rural dirt road. And on Aug. 3, 2000, the teen's body was found down a steep, dense embankment off a winding gravel road.

In opening statements Thursday, prosecutor Erika Souvlet, assistant Coos County district attorney, told the courtroom that the young couple's relationship was a "volatile mix of two individuals that came to a violent end," and that witnesses would testify that they saw McGuffin and Freeman together after Freeman left her friend's house.

They also plan to call a witness who will testify to seeing two men walking with a girl between them on a country road where Freeman's body was found. Yet another witness, Kristen Steinoff, will testify that McGuffin came to her on the night Freeman went missing, used methamphetamines and attempted to have sex with her.

Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29 - Page 20 Leahtrial

The two later went looking for Freeman in Steinoff's Kia. Both McGuffin's 1967 Mustang and the Kia were searched for evidence but none linking the cars to Freeman's death was found. Freeman's body was so decomposed the cause of death was never determined, but stabbing, gunshot and trauma from a blunt instrument were ruled out, prosecutors said.

Defense attorney Shaun McCrea had a different take on the teenage romance.

"Nick and Leah were a young couple in love and that includes all the kinds of teenage things that go with that kind of love," said McCrea. Despite extensive analysis and investigation, the state has no physical evidence linking McGuffin to the crime, McCrea said.

The key to the case is what time Freeman left her friend's house.

"Evidence will show the witness is mistaken about seeing the two together. Evidence will show no one saw Nick catch up with Leah on Central Avenue."

District Attorney Paul Frasier called Courtright to the stand less than an hour into the trial and questioned her for about an hour. Courtright, who cried through much of the testimony, talked of a daughter who was athletic and honest with her mother. On the day Freeman disappeared, Courtright came home to find Freeman and McGuffin washing his car, splashing each other with water and laughing.

Later, McGuffin called to ask if Freeman was home, then told Courtright not to worry, that he would find her and bring her home.

The next morning when Courtright awoke at 3:30 to use the bathroom and found her daughter still was not home, she told the court she was shocked. Hours later, Courtright called the McGuffins and learned she wasn't there, either.

McGuffin came to help Courtright look for the girl, then went to the police station to file a missing person's report. Days later, when McGuffin came to Courtight's house after a meeting with police, Freeman's sister, Denise Freeman, found him vomiting in the back yard.

McCrae told the court that behavior landed McGuffin in the emergency room about a week after Freeman's death, where physicians observed he was suffering "severe and mental anguish" over the disappearance of his girlfriend with whom he was quite close.

"He is crying, vomiting, somewhat suicidal. He is incommunicado, hyperventilating ... flushed, weeping, writhing around," McCrae said, reading from notes.

Testimony continued into the afternoon.

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Normal Victim's mom describe's final good-bye

Post by mommyof3kids on Thu Jul 07, 2011 3:31 pm

COQUILLE -- “She jumped up and kissed me on the cheek, and said, ‘I love you Mommy.’”
Cory Courtright paused, looking toward the floor of the witness stand. She clutched a tissue; tears streamed down her face.
“I never saw her again.”
Courtright, mother of homicide victim Leah Freeman, was one of the first witnesses to testify at Nick McGuffin’s murder trial. Her testimony came after the prosecution and defense gave their opening statements.
Erika Soublet, Coos County’s chief deputy district attorney described the night of June 28, 2000, as she and District Attorney R. Paul Frasier have pieced it together through interviews with more than 100 witnesses.
They concluded the then-18-year-old McGuffin killed 15-year-old Freeman and dumped her body down an embankment off Fairview Road.

Soublet said prosecutors have located a new witness who saw two men walking down Fairview Road the night of June 28, supporting a blond girl between them.
Other testimony, they say, tracks McGuffin’s movements the night of June 28.
McGuffin told police he dropped Freeman off at a friend’s house around 7 that night and never saw her again.When he went to pick her up at 9, she already had left her friend’s house. The friend told McGuffin that Freeman stormed out after they had a fight.
Witnesses saw Freeman walking down Central Avenue toward home around 9 p.m.McGuffin said he drove down Central Avenue looking for Freeman, but never found her.
Not true, Soublet said.
She and Frasier intend to call witnesses who will testify that they saw McGuffin catch up to Freeman on Central Avenue that night. She said witnesses will testify they saw Freeman and McGuffin get into an argument. One witness saw Freeman standing in the high school parking lot, near his house, and heard a scream a short while later, Soublet said.
Many witnesses saw McGuffin drive around looking for Freeman, saying he couldn’t find her.
In the defense’s opening statement, McGuffin’s lawyer, Shaun McCrea, told the jury McGuffin did not catch up to Freeman.He was frantic when he couldn’t find her, and drove around town for most of the night looking for her, McCrea said. At one point he enlisted a friend’s help with the search.
He stopped looking around 3 a.m. after going to Freeman’s house and seeing the light of a television flickering in the window, McCrea said.
The trial was scheduled to reconvene at 1 p.m. with testimony from Freeman’s sister.
Learn more in Friday’s edition of The World.


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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by mommyof3kids on Thu Jul 07, 2011 3:41 pm

Thinking of you Cory! So sad you have to go through this, but so happy this time is finally here! LOVE TO YOU AND DENISE today and always!! Big Hug
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by adelacruz on Thu Jul 07, 2011 3:45 pm

sending you lots of love Cory!!!! BlowKisses
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Guest on Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:02 pm

“She jumped up and kissed me on the cheek, and said, ‘I love you Mommy.’”
Cory Courtright paused, looking toward the floor of the witness stand. She clutched a tissue; tears streamed down her face.
“I never saw her again.”
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:33 pm

Nick McGuffin assumed his 15-year-old girlfriend had made it home the night she disappeared, his defense attorney said Thursday in the opening statement of the 29-year-old’s murder trial.

After spending several hours looking for Leah Freeman, who disappeared June 28, 2000, McGuffin returned to Freeman’s house after midnight, Eugene attorney Shaun McCrea said. He saw a light flickering in her bedroom, that he assumed was a television. He threw a couple of rocks at the window to rouse her, but got no response, so he assumed Freeman was mad at him, and went home, McCrea said.

When the girl’s mother, Cory Courtright, called McGuffin’s house the next morning asking if he knew where her daughter was, McGuffin said “What, she didn’t come home last night?”

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:39 pm

I'm sorry, in advance, if the news reports might not be in the order that they happened. I'm just posting them when I see them.

Testimony from witnesses who have recently come forward will prove Nicholas McGuffin guilty of the murder of Leah Freeman, District Attorney Paul Frasier said this morning during opening arguments in McGuffin's trial.
In their opening arguments, the defense maintained there isn't enough evidence to prove McGuffin guilty in the 2000 slaying and that, in fact, evidence proves that he couldn't have committed the crime.
After the opening arguments, Freeman's mother, Cory Courtright, began to testify about events the night of Freeman's disappearance. She will continue her testimony after the morning recess.

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Guest on Thu Jul 07, 2011 8:46 pm

The background of the Leah Freeman case is located here.
http://victimsheartland.forumotion.com/portal
Or click on the Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29 - Page 20 Gavel_10 in the header.
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 9:04 pm

It has been a long time coming for the family and friends of Leah Freeman, the Coquille teen that was murdered in 2000, the chance to get justice for Leah. But, a jury will decide if they have the right guy.
Facing day one of his Murder trial, Nick McGuffin entered Judge Richard Barron's courtroom with a smile for his Defense Attorney's.
Security was heavy for those entering the courtroom on Thursday morning to hear opening arguments.
Coos County Chief Deputy District Attorney Erika Soublet handled the opening for the prosecution's case which, both sides seemed to agree hinges on whether the then 18-year-old Nick McGuffin caught-up with his 15-year-old girlfriend after a time that he claims he did not see her again.
"He's upset she wasn't spending time with him that night, chose to spend time with her friends, at a time when she was upset that she was losing friends and realizing the toxic nature of the relationship they had. And that volatile mix of those two individuals came to a violent end with Leah Freeman's life being taken by the actions of the defendant and her body dumped off the side of Lee Valley Road in an effort to cover things up."
In her opening argument, Defense Attorney Shaun McCrea countered that they will prove McGuffin could not have possibly played a role in her death.
"It is a tragedy what happened to Leah Freeman, but when you the jurors hear all of the evidence in this case we expect that, based on the evidence, there was not a time frame when Nicholas McGuffin could have caught-up with, or did catch-up with, Leah Freeman and do anything to her."
Opening statements lasted about an hour, then witnesses began to get called to take the stand.
Cory Courtright was the third witness called and, in often emotional testimony, she recounted the relationship that Leah had with Nick, and her disapproval of it.
Courtright testified that one of the last things her daughter said to her was that she was going to take her advice and distance herself from McGuffin.
The testimony then turned to the days following Leah Freeman's disappearance, and how McGuffin was holding-up. "The McGuffin's pulled-up with Nick, he got out of the car, I started talking to his parents and the next thing I knew, my daughter Denise came running from the back yard and said 'oh my gosh mom, there is something wrong with Nick,' I said what do you mean there's something wrong with him? She said he's in the back, he's throwing-up."
McCrea later read-in a medical document stating that McGuffin had suffered an anxiety attack.
A 12-member jury, with two alternates, is hearing the case. It is made up of five men and nine women.

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by lisette on Thu Jul 07, 2011 9:41 pm

She and Frasier intend to call witnesses who will testify that they saw McGuffin catch up to Freeman on Central Avenue that night. She said witnesses will testify they saw Freeman and McGuffin get into an argument. One witness saw Freeman standing in the high school parking lot, near his house, and heard a scream a short while later, Soublet said.
Soublet said prosecutors have located a new witness who saw two men walking down Fairview Road the night of June 28, supporting a blond girl between them.

New information that I had not heard before.
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by laga on Thu Jul 07, 2011 9:49 pm

I re-visited the memorial, I love it! Oh, what a life that precious girl would have had, how far she would have gone, how many more lives she would have touched!
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Her spirit touches me and I love her.

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Normal Video on this link

Post by Nama on Thu Jul 07, 2011 10:01 pm

Opening arguments started in the trial of Nicholas McGuffin, the man accused of killing his then teen girlfriend 11 years ago.

Leah Freeman's body was discovered a month after she disappeared about nine miles from her home.

For the first day of the trial, the courtroom was packed as family and friends filed in. As for the defendent, he entered the courtroom smiling and even laughing.

But jovial is not how the state described him. They say McGuffin's relationship with Freeman was toxic.

The day she disappeared, the prosecution says McGuffin did two things wrong.

"One, he used a control substance methamphethamine," says Erika Soublet, state attorney.

After that, prosecutors say McGuffin forced himself on a friend and then went searching for Freeman.

The defense says none of that happened. Instead, they say McGuffin dillegently searched for her.

"The DNA does not show any connection between Mr. McGuffin and Leah Freeman's death," says Shaun McCrea, defense attorney.

Once opening statements wrapped up, the state called on a key witness, Freeman's mother, Cory Courtright.

"We had a good relationship. We were close. We always talked about a lot of things," says Courtright.

That is, until Freeman started dating McGuffin Courtright testified.

After Leah disappeared, Courtright says one incident made her look at her daughter's boyfriend differently.

She says he'd just finished an interview with police when her other daughter came up to her.

"Something wrong with Nick and I said, what do you mean something's wrong with him? And she said he's in the back throwing up," says Courtright.

The state also called on several law enforcement officers involved in the investigation. They plan to call more witnesses Friday.

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Normal Mother of Oregon girl found dead 11 years ago gets to witness long-awaited trial

Post by Nama on Fri Jul 08, 2011 1:00 am

After a decade of anguish, Cory Courtright will get the chance today to do something that no mother could ever imagine looking forward to: testifying in the murder trial of the man accused of killing her 15-year-old daughter.

But Courtright has awaited this day for a long time, haranguing authorities to stay on the case, appealing to the media to keep her daughter's story in the spotlight, posting investigative materials on a website in order to point the finger squarely at the girl's then-boyfriend, Nicholas James McGuffin.

Now, after two days of jury selection that ended with the 12 people who will decide McGuffin's fate piling into a school bus and touring the 11-year-old crime scenes, Courtright will finally get the chance to help put away the man she believes killed her daughter, Leah Freeman. But that decision is largely out of her hands.

Prosecutors admit they have zero physical evidence in the case against McGuffin, which may help explain why they called an unprecedented 114 witnesses in the grand jury proceedings last year to win an indictment against the man.

Coos County District Attorney Paul Frasier said he intends to call 65 witnesses over the estimated four days he believes he'll need to present his case — perhaps the largest group he's ever subpoenaed, he said.

But that doesn't foretell a weak case, Frasier insists. The reason for the staggering number of witnesses is because there are people who have bits and pieces of the evidence the prosecutor wants the jury to hear, and he says he needs them all to tell a complete story.

"It's just that there are a lot of people who have a little piece of the puzzle," Frasier said Wednesday. "It's a matter of putting it all together."

One witness Frasier won't be calling is the city's former police chief. The DA canceled the subpoena of Mark Dannels, with whom he teamed up shortly before the Arizona transplant first arrived in Coquille to bring a new energy and focus to the cold case. But Dannels left the department in May and would now need to be flown back from Arizona to testify. The budget-wary DA says he was only planning to use Dannels for a single conversation he had with McGuffin back in 2009, and another officer was there at the time who's still in town.

"I've got seven people charged with murder in the county jail right now," Frasier said. "I don't have unlimited funds to try these cases."

The former chief is clearly frustrated he won't be a part of the case he helped break open.

"The city stepped up and said 'We'll pay his way back, he's the face of the case,' but Frasier said no," Dannels said. "Lets just hope they get a conviction."

McGuffin and his attorneys might expect to have a high level of confidence in avoiding a conviction, given the state's nonexistent physical evidence and reliance on dozens of pieced-together witness statements.

Instead, what worries Bob McCrea, a Eugene attorney who is representing McGuffin along with his daughter, lead counsel Shaun McCrea, is how much media attention his client has received, including a national report on ABC's "20/20" that aired last year.

A recent survey of Coos County area residents indicates most are quite familiar with the case, and many already have made up their minds about McGuffin's guilt or innocence, Bob McCrea told The Register-Guard last week. But because many respondents also said they felt they could remain impartial about the case, McCrea said, he didn't feel he had sufficient cause to ask Judge Richard Barrons for a change of venue.

Frasier had said earlier that he expected such a motion, but that he hadn't seen one granted in Coos County in 20-plus years on the job. On Wednesday, upon the completion of jury selection, Frasier said he was surprised at how many of the approximately 70 prospective jurors interviewed said they'd never heard of Leah Freeman, much less made up their minds about who murdered her.

Though 46 people were excused for one reason or another — including a Coquille garbageman who warned that people's trash would not be collected were he to take two weeks off — the vast majority had never heard about the case, Frasier said.

"I thought there'd be more of an issue there, but only three or four of them expressed an opinion that they needed to be excused" because of prior knowledge, Frasier said.

Today's proceedings will begin with opening statements by the prosecution and the defense, though Shaun McCrea could choose to wait until the state has finished presenting its case so as not to tip her hand.

Courtright will be one of the first witnesses Frasier calls to the stand.

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Normal Trial recessed until Monday

Post by Nama on Fri Jul 08, 2011 1:01 am

The trial of Nicholas McGuffin in connection to the death of Leah Freeman has been recessed until Monday.
Judge Richard Barron has a conflict Friday.
After opening statements the prosecution called Freeman's mother, Cory Courtright, and sister to the witness stand to testify about McGuffin and Freeman's relationship and the events the night that she disappeared.
The prosecution also called several of Leah's high school friends, who also talked about the relationship between McGuffin and Freeman.
Testimony will resume Monday morning at 9.

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

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Normal Emotions run high as trial begins The prosecution opens its case against a man accused in the death of a 15-year-old Coquille girl 11 years ago

Post by Nama on Fri Jul 08, 2011 8:28 am

Nick McGuffin assumed his 15-year-old girlfriend had made it home the night she disappeared 11 years ago, his defense attorney claimed Thursday in the opening statement of the 29-year-old’s murder trial.

After spending several hours looking for Leah Freeman, who vanished June 28, 2000, McGuffin returned to Freeman’s house after midnight, Eugene attorney Shaun McCrea said. He saw a light flickering in her bedroom that he assumed was a television. He threw a couple of rocks at the window to rouse her but got no response, so he assumed Freeman was OK and went home, McCrea said. Freeman’s body turned up weeks later, down a wooded embankment on the outskirts of nearby Fairview.

When the girl’s mother, Cory Courtright, called McGuffin’s house the next morning asking if he knew where her daughter was, McGuffin said, “What, she didn’t come home last night?”

It’s a statement that Courtright has said she found incriminating, because she took it to mean McGuffin was claiming he didn’t know Freeman was missing. But McCrea said it’s an indication that her client thought Freeman was safe and sound.

“He figures she’s there, and she’s mad at him,” McCrea said. “So he goes home.”

That was one of a few elements both the prosecution and defense focused on in Thursday’s opening arguments, a session marked by fuzzy memories of the 11-year-old facts and simmering emotions, despite how much time has passed.

Both Freeman’s mother and the girl’s sister, Denise Bertrand, took the stand. Both stopped several times to regain their composure, especially when asked to remember their last moments with Freeman.

The girl told her mother on June 28 that she was going to take her advice, Courtright said, spend more time with her friends and less with the boyfriend who had monopolized much of her life in the preceding months — to the worry of family and friends. Courtright said she was glad to hear it, she said, and then Leah “jumped up and kissed me on the cheek, and said, ‘I love you mommy.’ I never saw her again.”

Other memories were more difficult to come by. When Coos County District Attorney Paul Frasier asked if Freeman had a television in her bedroom — one that could produce the flickering glow McGuffin said convinced him the girl was home safe — Courtright first said she couldn’t remember.

Nor did she recall McGuffin telling her the day after Leah went missing about the pebbles he claimed to have thrown at the window, she testified. When cross-examined by McCrea, though, Courtright said there was a TV in her daughter’s room, and that she did remember that conversation with McGuffin.

In response to prosecutors’ questions, Bertrand testified that there were no rocks beneath Leah’s window the next day, and that when she went into her sister’s room late that night, no lights were on.

The state spent much of the day calling witnesses who described a rocky, all-consuming relationship between Freeman, then a freshman at Coquille High School, and McGuffin, a senior. Witnesses also testified that McGuffin’s demeanor quickly shifted from calm and helpful to agitated and curt, “chainsmoking cigarettes as fast as he could light them,” Assistant District Attorney Erika Soublet said, once he figured out he was under suspicion.

Prosecutors said they will call at least one witness when the trial resumes next week who will testify to seeing McGuffin and Freeman together hours after the boy claimed he was last with her; an officer who will testify that McGuffin told him he knew who killed Freeman; a witness who claims McGuffin told him “he kept seeing her laying there, that he couldn’t believe he had let bad things happen to her”; and another man who claims McGuffin bragged that he had killed before, and would kill again.

One witness, Soublet said, was on her way home from Coquille Valley Hospital the night of Freeman’s disappearance when she spotted McGuffin and his friend, Brent Bartley, walking close to where Freeman’s body was eventually found, so badly decomposed that the county medical examiner couldn’t determine the exact cause of death. The two were on either side of Freeman, and seemed to be holding her up as they walked, Soublet said.

The state will also call to the stand Kristen Steinhoff, who claims McGuffin came to her house the same night Freeman went missing and tried to have sex with her after the two did methamphetamine.

McCrea said that the seduction attempt was Steinhoff’s, who tried to plant in McGuffin’s mind that maybe Leah had gone off to a party and was hanging out with another guy. Hooking up with Steinhoff was about “payback,” McCrea said, but it was McGuffin who changed his mind when he realized that would be the wrong thing to do.

Soublet said the five men and nine women on the jury, which included two alternates, will hear next week from a man who knew McGuffin years after Freeman went missing, a man who was dating someone the accused had also seen from time to time. McGuffin didn’t like that, Soublet said in her opening statement, and the witness will testify that McGuffin warned him: “I strangled that bitch, and I can do the same to you” and “I’ve killed before and I can kill again.”

While they’ve yet to present their case, McGuffin’s two attorneys described McGuffin and Freeman’s relationship as a loving one, albeit with some turbulence along the way.

“Nicholas McGuffin and Leah Freeman were young and they were in love, and that includes all the kinds of teenage things that go along with that love,” Shaun McCrea said. “There were arguments, but they were like passing thundershowers.”

The prosecution called one witness, Matthew Carney, out of turn on Thursday because he is set to deploy with the military to Afghanistan next week.

On cross-examination, defense attorney Bob McCrea questioned Carney, a former classmate of Freeman’s, about his relationship with another yet-to-be called witness, Raymond Lewis, asking about his whereabouts the night Freeman vanished and whether Lewis could provide an alibi. Shaun McCrea had said in her opening that there was evidence that Freeman’s clothing may have been sliced by a knife. Bob McCrea asked Carney whether Lewis commonly kept hunting equipment, specifically a hunting knife, in his truck.

When Carney said he couldn’t remember whether Lewis was with him the night Freeman disappeared, District Attorney Frasier ended his redirect with this blunt question:

“Did Mr. Lewis ever tell you he was involved in any way, shape or form in the disappearance of Leah Freeman?”

“No,” Carney replied.

The McCreas said that McGuffin loved his girlfriend and was distraught when she went missing, so much that he was hospitalized with a panic attack after she disappeared.

The McCreas also highlighted the state’s lack of physical evidence, saying that despite thorough examinations and lab tests conducted from samples of McGuffin’s car, his parents’ car and Steinhoff’s car, none of the samples showed any link between the crime and the defendant.

“You will be voting ‘Not guilty,’ ” Shaun McCrea told the jury. “Because he’s an innocent man.”

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Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jul 08, 2011 11:33 am

Dear Cory,

That pic of you upthread sends chills through me. You're an amazing woman!!! Couple Hugging

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by mommyof3kids on Fri Jul 08, 2011 1:55 pm

By Tim Novotny KCBY News
Story Published: Jul 8, 2011 at 10:17 AM PDT
After testimony wrapped-up on day one of the Leah Freeman murder trial in Coquille, at about 4:30 p.m. Thursday, the trial was recessed until Monday, July 11.
Apparently this had been a planned break, as Coos County Judge Richard Barron had a scheduling conflict.
The trial is set to last through July 22nd, and will run on Mondays through Fridays.
A court spokesperson says there are no plans for weekend court dates, but the possibility cannot be totally discounted, depending on how the trial is progressing.
Nick McGuffin faces a possible Life sentence, with a minimum of 25 years served, if convicted of the murder of 15 year old Leah Freeman, his girlfriend, in the Summer of 2000.
The second day of testimony will begin Monday morning in Coquille.

I just wanted to post this so that everyone knows it was previously planned to not have trial today. I was confused until I read this!
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jul 08, 2011 5:59 pm


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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jul 08, 2011 6:03 pm

Trial begins for man accused of killing teen in 2000

Leah Freeman

COQUILLE, Ore. - Leah Freeman disappeared in June 2000 when she was 15 years old.

Initially reported as a possible runaway and later a missing person, the discovery of her body off the side of a rural road in August 2000 shifted the case to homicide.

Another 10 years would pass before a grand jury would indict Freeman's boyfriend at the time, Nick McGuffin and charge him with her murder.

Attorneys made their opening statements on Thursday, laying out their key arguments for jurors.

Prosecutors say McGuffin was upset Freeman was not spending time with him on the night she dissappeared.

"The volatile mix of those two individuals came to a violent end with Leah Freeman's life being taken," said Erika Soublet, Coos County's chief deputy district attorney.

The defense says the prosecution's time frame just doesn't match up.

"The evidence will show that no one saw Nick catch up with Leah at anytime along the road," defense attorney Shaun McCrea told the jury.

Freeman's mother, Cory Courtright, took the stand and recounted the first time she saw McGuffin after Leah vanished.

She said McGuffin and his parents arrived at her home.

While she spoke with the parents, McGuffin was in the backyard vomiting, she testified.

The trial is expected to last three weeks.

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Post by jeanne1807 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:43 pm

Thinking of Cory and Denise. Have strength!

This has to be soooo hard trying to remember things from 11 years ago. Then again to Cory and Denise it might seem like just yesterday they saw and loved Leah!
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Nama on Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:40 pm

Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29 - Page 20 Th_plogankellyyoutube002

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Post by NiteSpinR on Sun Jul 10, 2011 2:18 am

Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29 - Page 20 9311811

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Guest on Sun Jul 10, 2011 8:52 am

Aside from slaying, sides' stories mesh
Leah Freeman probably died sometime the night of June 28, 2000.
Her body was found discarded 37 days later down an embankment off Fairview Road.
All Freeman's internal organs had decomposed, and the medical examiner could find no fractures or nicks on her skeleton to indicate she had been shot or stabbed. Still, the examiner ruled her death to be homicidal violence, and a hunt for her killer began. Ten years later, police arrested her then-boyfriend, Nick McGuffin for the murder. Thursday, the long-awaited trial began. According to police reports filed in 2000, witnesses last saw Freeman walking down Central Avenue in Coquille that night toward her home on Knott Street. She never made it.In their opening statements, the prosecution laid out the paths of both Freeman, and then 18-year-old McGuffin, as far as witnesses could take them. Where did they go? Both the prosecution and defense agree several people saw Freeman walking down Central Avenue at some point either before or after 9 p.m. Freeman had had a fight with her best friend, stormed out of her friend's house, and was walking home. McGuffin showed up a little after 9 to pick her up. As Freeman had already left, he drove off in his blue Mustang to catch up to her. Here is where the two stories change. The prosecution claims to have witnesses who saw McGuffin catch up to Freeman on Central Avenue. Furthermore, a witness saw the couple fighting. Another witness saw Freeman standing in a phone booth, as two men were fighting in a nearby parking lot. Someone else saw Freeman standing in a parking lot across from the high school as he was driving home. That witness heard a scream a short while later.All this happened before 10 p.m. The defense maintains that McGuffin never caught up to Freeman. It was impossible, there was not enough time. But after this short period, the prosecution and defense agree again. Many people saw McGuffin driving all over Coquille the night of June 28 and early morning of June 29. He told everyone he was looking for Leah, couldn't find Leah. He called Freeman's mother asking if she had come home. He visited Freeman's sister at her job at Denny's Pizza twice asking if she had seen her. He was stopped by two police officers for a burnt out headlight, and asked them if they had seen Leah. He went to a friend's house to elicit help finding Leah. At some point in the night he went to another friend's house and had a sexual encounter with her. The prosecution claims McGuffin did meth with this girl. Then the two of them went out in the friend's car looking for Leah. The defense claims that McGuffin stopped looking for Freeman around 3 a.m. when he went to Freeman's house. He saw a television light flickering in her upstairs bedroom window, threw some small rocks at the window to get her attention, determined that she was mad at him and went home. The prosecution contests this. And then there is the prosecution's new witness, who saw two men walking down Fairview Road with a short blond girl supported between them. Regardless, the next morning, Freeman's mother called McGuffin to find her daughter. He came over immediately. He went with Freeman's family to file a missing-person report. He helped look. Eventually he had an anxiety attack and ended up in the hospital. The prosecution claims this was after an interview with police. The defense maintains McGuffin was sick with worry about Freeman.


Read more: http://theworldlink.com/news/local/article_79dc98a9-8c45-593d-ab19-ed68847b3708.html#ixzz1Ri5tXVxS
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Guest on Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:06 am

Photobucket


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Last edited by lindamarie on Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:06 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:33 am

Not for nothing, but that defense attorney needs to do something with her hair! She looks like she just rolled out of bed! duct and run

Cory, I hope this puts a smile on your face!! You are in our thoughts and prayers! ❤

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Post by laga on Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:18 am

I thought she was thumping him on his ear to get him to cry.

Oh Wrap, don't criticize her hair, with what must be inside that head, it's probably the best those hairs could do.......

JMO
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Post by Guest on Sun Jul 10, 2011 12:06 pm

Photobucket
To me this looks more like a term of endearment. She is fixing his hair and he is smiling.... Sarcasm
Wrap I got a laugh out of your comment about her hair.
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:02 pm

Oh Wrap, don't criticize her hair, with what must be inside that head, it's probably the best those hairs could do.......
ROFLMAO ROFLMAO ROFLMAO :lol: :lol:

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Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:03 pm

To me this looks more like a term of endearment. She is fixing his hair and he is smiling....
Don't even make me say what I am thinking! la la la duct and run Eeewww

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by misshesitation on Sun Jul 10, 2011 6:15 pm

Wrapitup wrote:
To me this looks more like a term of endearment. She is fixing his hair and he is smiling....
Don't even make me say what I am thinking! la la la duct and run Eeewww
I agree :muahaha: butterfly
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by jeanne1807 on Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:18 pm

This has bothered me all weekend so I have to say something.

This family, Cory, has been waiting for this trial for 11 years. Whatever in heavens name would a judge have to do on a Friday that would take presidence over that?

I have been very upset every time I think of it.

I know judges are busy people but this is a murder case that needed a new police chief and the Vidocq society to even get moving and charge the defendent of this murder.

Why?

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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by charminglane on Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:28 pm

Out of town family wedding?
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by NiteSpinR on Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:38 am

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Post by lisette on Mon Jul 11, 2011 9:44 am

Cory, I am thinking of you...Hope that Loud Mouth KM is not giving you any problems... kick
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Normal Re: Nicholas McGuffin found Guilty of Manslaughter for the death of Leah Nicole Freeman/Sentencing w/be on Aug. 1/ Leah's story on 20/20 Friday July 29

Post by charminglane on Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:15 am

Happy Monday, Cory! witch
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Normal Freeman's best friend testifies

Post by Nama on Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:18 pm

The Nick McGuffin murder trial continued this morning with the testimony of Cheri Mitchell, who was Leah Freeman’s best friend.
Mitchell said that she had disapproved of the relationship between Freeman and McGuffin.
She also stated that Freeman had began using drugs during the course of the relationship.
The last time she saw Freeman alive, Mitchell said that she and Freeman had just had a fight. She said she had just told Freeman that she disapproved of her relationship with McGuffin and her drug use.
Testimony will continue at 11 a.m. today.

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Post by Guest on Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:23 pm

Thanks for the update BJ. Sound like Nick was a bad influence on Leah right from the start.

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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:51 pm

I just wanted to let everyone know that I got an email from Cory. She said to tell everyone hello and that she will be coming our way once things settle down.

The latest: 20/20 contacted Cory yesterday to do a follow-up to the October broadcast. So, the reporters are back in Coquille and ABC is saying it will air Next Saturday, July 30th. So, please set your DVR's!! I know they changed the date a couple of time before but for now, that is the date they have chosen!!

Also, Cory is having a big family BBQ on Sunday, July 31st in honor of Leah's life.

Then, on August 1, she will be in court for Nick McGuffin's sentencing and will have the opportunity to stand in front of him and let him have it!

She is very excited about Finally getting her chance to tell him what she thinks of him and how it's impacted her life.

God Bless Cory!! She is a real trooper and someone I highly regard for all she has gone through and how she has fought and fought to get the murder locked up and have some justice for Leah!
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