Bebb-Jones shot wife, prosecutors suggest

An expert witness for prosecutors believes the wife of Marcus Bebb-Jones suffered bullet wounds to her head.

However, Bebb-Jones’ public defenders note the same witness failed to draw that conclusion when she first examined the skull of Sabrina Bebb-Jones in 2005.

Marcus Bebb-Jones, 49, is scheduled to go on trial on a first-degree murder charge in November. His wife was last seen in September 1997, while with Bebb-Jones at Mesa Mall. The two owned the Hotel Melrose in Grand Junction. Her skull was found on Douglas Pass in Garfield County in 2004.

Bebb-Jones’ attorneys have asked for a hearing about the admissibility of forensic pathology related to the skull.

In a court filing, they say 9th Judicial District prosecutors indicated in a Sept. 14 report that forensic anthropologist Dr. Diane France is now saying she believes two defects in the cranium were caused by a bullet, “despite the fact that she noted these same defects seven years earlier and attributed no significance to them when it came to cause or manner of death.”

Petre has been hearing testimony on a flurry of motions, including a challenge the admissibility of evidence obtained by interviewing Bebb-Jones without reading him his rights.

Bebb-Jones also is challenging his extradition from England. His attorneys contend it was based on an affidavit containing “numerous false statements,” which prosecutors deny.

Bebb-Jones also is asking Petre to reconsider having him continue to be held in Garfield County Jail without bail. His attorneys also are seeking a review of the disciplinary records of Eric Ashworth, who helped investigate the Bebb-Jones case for the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and later resigned, apparently over allegations of improper use of a credit card.

Petre has yet to rule on numerous motions, but has granted the prosecution’s request to be allowed to tell potential jurors that the death penalty will not be sought in the case. He also agreed to the prosecutors’ request that the jury not be told Bebb-Jones would receive a life sentence if convicted, but he reserved the right to possibly revisit that ruling.

Prosecutors also want the right to be able to take the jury to where the skull was found on Douglas Pass so jurors can see its remoteness, in support of their argument that it was an opportune place for Bebb-Jones to kill his wife.

His attorneys object to the site visit, arguing there’s no evidence it was the scene of a crime.


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