Columbia County jury convicts woman of killing roommate

A Martinez woman was sentenced to life in prison Friday for killing her roommate last year.

A Columbia County jury convicted Yvette Taylor, 47, of felony murder in the February 2012 death of Theodore Crew, 63. She was acquitted on a malice murder charge.

Superior Court Judge Carl. C Brown Jr. sentenced Taylor to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

“We believe (Taylor) is a threat to the community,” Dis­trict Attorney Ashley Wright said as she asked for the sentence. “We believe that’s the only way to protect the community from (Taylor).”

The trial began Wednes­day, and jurors deliberated nearly four hours before the verdict Friday.

Police were notified about Crew’s death Feb. 11, 2012, when Taylor called 911, saying her “friend was dead.”

Crew was found nude in the bathroom of his home in Apple­cross Apartments. Blood was found on and around a chair in the living room and on the floor and walls of the hallway to the bathroom. The bathroom floor, where Crew was found, was wet with water and bleach but had little blood.

Dr. Daniel Brown, a Geor­gia Bureau of Investigation medical examiner, testified that Crew died from multiple sharp and blunt force traumas.

During a videotaped interview with investigators, Taylor repeatedly denied involvement in Crew’s death.

Taylor’s attorney, Amanda Morris, said a pre-trial psychological evaluation showed she is schizophrenic.

Deputy April March testified that Taylor spoke about the incident in the Columbia County Detention Center, telling the jailer that, “I cut him, I admit that, but I didn’t kill him.”

Neighbors testified that they heard cursing, grunting, and scuffling noises coming from Taylor’s apartment.

Taylor opted not to testify, and the defense presented no evidence or witnesses.

In 1992, Taylor was charged with murder in the death of her 22-year-old brother, Jerry Taylor. Authorities found Taylor, then 25, kneeling over his body in their home. She told investigators they were fighting over a gun when it accidentally fired, according to Augusta Chronicle archives. Her brother was shot three times in the right eye.

Just before trial, Taylor pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Taylor was arrested again in 2004 on an aggravated assault charge, accused of attacking her roommate in Har­lem with a broken beer bottle. Though he sustained injuries, the case wasn’t prosecuted at the victim’s request.

Wright said she asked for the maximum penalty Friday because of Taylor’s long-time pattern of aggression.

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