Jason Young charged with wife's murder

Jason Young
December 14, 2009 9:00:00 PM PST
Monday authorities announced the arrest of Jason Young for the 2006 murder of his wife, Michelle Young. He is charged with first-degree murder.

Transylvania County authorities took him into custody in Brevard, NC around 1:30 p.m. Monday.

"He was stopped on the road in a traffic stop and was placed under arrest," Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby said.

He was driven back by investigators from the Wake County Sheriff's department and the SBI who have been working the case for years.

Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison won't say if Young finally said anything to investigators on the hours-long ride to Raleigh.

Officials brought him to the Wake County jail late Monday evening, where they placed him under no bond.

Now with shoulder length hair, Jason Young stepped in front of a magistrate judge just a little after 7:30 p.m.

"You've been charged with first degree murder," the magistrate said. "You have no bond at this time. Your release is not authorized."

Court documents state that "on or about November 3, 2006 ... (Young) unlawfully, willfully and feloniously did of malice aforethought kill and murder Michelle Fisher Young."

Michelle was found beaten to death in the couple's home. She was pregnant with their second child.

Jason Young refused to talk with investigators in the years since the murder, and he refused to respond to civil lawsuits.

He lost all of his assets to Michelle's mother and was declared his wife's murderer in a wrongful death case.

And he lost his daughter, Cassidy, who was 2-years-old at the time of the murder. The toddler was found unharmed inside the house near her mother's dead body.

"What she went through and no telling what that child saw, uh, yes, it's weighed heavily on my mind and our investigators' minds," Harrison said.

Most think he gave her up to Michelle's mother in New York, rather than have to talk about the case.

But investigators say they watched those civil cases closely to see if Jason would try to collect his wife's life insurance money.

"There was an issue about insurance proceeds," Willoughby said. "There was also a wrongful death civil suit that was initiated against him. There was a custody matter that was initiated against him. And in each of those there was information that was gathered that was helpful in this case."

And there was much, much more circumstantial evidence laid out in search warrants and other court documents.

They indicated the Young's were having serious financial and marital problems and that Jason was cheating on Michelle.

Just last month Harrison promised an arrest in the case soon.

"We hate to see anything like this," Harrison said. "It's two families just torn apart and it will never be repaired. But we definitely need some closure in this and we definitely need to go in this direction and I feel good about it."

Since the murder, Jason Young was a person of interest, but police never named him a suspect.

And today, much to the relief of many who closely followed this case, he is now facing murder charges.

People who live in subdivision where Michelle has killed say they're not surprised that Jason Young is now charged, they're just glad authorities never forgot about the case.

"There's a great sense of relief that the case is on its way to being solved," neighbor Pat Hunnell said.

Hunnell says initially neighbors were on edge.

"The unknown, I think, had people much more concerned than the actual who did it," she said. "After those initial few days, people really took a deep breath and heard what law enforcement was saying and realized that it was a really awful, but unique incident."

Hunnell says Young was around for a while after the murder, but he eventually emptied out the house and moved away.

His interaction with neighbors was limited during that time and his silence, Hunnell says is very telling.

"He certainly made himself look suspicious," she said.

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