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Bond denied for suspect in Hephzibah slaying

Friday, Dec. 14, 2012 1:27 PM
Last updated 8:54 PM
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Bond was denied Friday for one of three people charged in the death of a Hephzibah resident whose body was found last week.

Joseph Leon-Guerrero, 33, faces charges of murder, theft and possession of a knife during the commission of a crime in the Dec. 5 death of 48-year-old Michael Wickert on Keron Way.

Assistant District Attorney Titus Nichols told the judge in Richmond County Superior Court that sheriff’s investigators found text messages on Leon-Guerrero’s phone that detectives believe were made while Wickert was being beaten and stabbed to death.

The phone, which was found at the scene, contained text messages to Larry L. Norton Jr. telling Norton to come take the victim’s vehicle, the prosecutor said. Sheriff’s officers found Wickert’s 1987 Chev­rolet Cama­ro Z-28 on Tuesday; they had searched for the vehicle because investigators believe it could provide crucial evidence.

Norton, 31, and Lisa Blair, 41, also face a charge of murder in Wickert’s death.

The prosecutor said Friday that Blair told investigators she woke up about 5:30 a.m. Dec. 5 and found Leon-Guerrero holding a sledge hammer and standing over Wickert’s body. She said she helped move the body into the bathtub, Nichols said.

Wickert died of blunt force trauma and stabbing, according to earlier reports from the sheriff’s office.

In asking for bond, Leon-Guerrero’s defense attorney, Kelli Spencer, of the public defender’s office, said Friday that he has a valid claim of self-defense.

Leon-Guerrero is a divorced father of five who earned his GED at Augusta Technical College, Spencer said.

The prosecutor said Leon-Guerrero’s criminal history included theft in 2011, disorderly conduct this year and a burglary conviction in 2007 in Jenkins County.

Blair and Norton also remain in jail pending possible indictment and trial.

Comments (6) Add comment
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OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 12/14/12 - 02:53 pm
2
1
If found gulity

the punishment should be the same as he inflected.

Death.

rebellious
21374
Points
rebellious 12/14/12 - 04:01 pm
3
0
More than meets the eye

in this case. Murder is never justified, but I am being told there are mitigating circumstances. Not as clear cut as the released info shows. Just saying.

rmwhitley
5547
Points
rmwhitley 12/14/12 - 07:18 pm
0
0
I'd let him roam free
Unpublished

until trial. Then I'd make sure a left-wing jury heard the case in order for the punk to be home for Christmas either in Mexico or America.

OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 12/15/12 - 01:36 pm
0
0
drpjay62
6
Points
drpjay62 12/23/12 - 08:45 pm
0
0
look at his neck.

looks like his neck and face have been in a fight.also it funny how some people that were in the house didnt hear anyone screaming? hum looks like someone isnt telling the truth.

drpjay62
6
Points
drpjay62 12/23/12 - 08:54 pm
0
0
also self defense?

looks to me like he has a valid case of self defense by the way his face and neck looks it seems he was defending himself.and the girl woke up to him standing over mike?hum as brutal as they claim it was she didnt hear anything?and he was texting while this was going on?wow i wish i was talented like that(beating someone and texting at the sametime)like i said someone is lying and i wonder who.

drpjay62
6
Points
drpjay62 12/23/12 - 08:59 pm
0
0
richmond county courts

court system in richmond county has him also gulity until he proves to them that he is not what happen to being innocent until proven guilty? oh i forgot good old boy southern justice still at large.

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