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Woman pleads not guilty to murder in boyfriend's Jan. 1 stabbing death in Decatur
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Woman pleads not guilty to murder in boyfriend's Jan. 1 stabbing death in Decatur


DECATUR — The woman accused of stabbing her boyfriend to death with a shard of glass during an early morning argument appeared in court Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to three counts of first-degree murder.

Billie Jo L. Soyster, 22, was represented in Macon County Circuit Court by Chief Public Defender David Ellison. He told Judge Phoebe Bowers that Soyster wished to waive her right to a preliminary hearing, and Bowers assigned the case to the trial list of Judge Jeffrey Geisler. A pretrial hearing was scheduled for March 4.

In a sworn affidavit attached to the case, Decatur police detective Scott Hastings said 38-year-old David W. Murray died Jan. 1 in Decatur Memorial Hospital from a stab wound to the chest.

Hastings said Soyster was questioned and told police about an early morning argument in a bedroom she shared with Murray at a home in the 500 block of East Division Street. The argument turned physical, and Hastings quoted Soyster as saying she was attacked by Murray.

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“Soyster advised that, after Murray had assaulted her, he began calling her names that made her mad,” Hastings said in the affidavit. “Soyster indicated she then picked up a piece of broken glass and stabbed Murray one time in the chest.”

Detective Sgt. Chris Copeland later told the Herald & Review that police had noted minor bruising on Soyster’s forearms but had not seen any serious injuries. Soyster remained held in the Macon County Jail on Wednesday in lieu of $500,000 bond.

2019 mug shots from the Herald & Review

Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid


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