An ex-Marine charged with killing his wife faces four more Measure 11 charges after a second witness alleged he also tried to engage him in a murder-for-hire scheme.
A Jackson County grand jury on Thursday indicted Bourne Huddleston, a 43-year-old retired gunnery sergeant, of attempting to hire a second person to kill 34-year-old Kristy Huddleston, a nurse care manager for the Department of Veterans Affairs' Southern Oregon Rehabilitation Center and Clinics in White City, said prosecuting attorney David Hoppe.
The same grand jury had previously heard from a different man who also said he was approached by Huddleston to kill his wife.
The same jury that indicted Huddleston on six Measure 11 counts related to her death one week ago, has now added the following additional counts: attempted aggravated murder, solicitation to commit aggravated murder, attempted murder and solicitation to commit murder, Hoppe said.
"Through further investigation we were able to determine that another man was solicited by the defendant to kill his wife," said David Hoppe.
The state maintains Huddleston killed his wife with a single gunshot wound to her head, fired from a firearm equipped with a silencer, after he failed in his attempts to hire either of the two men to do the job for him, said Hoppe.
Police and Jackson County Fire District No. 5 responded to the Huddlestons' rural home at 6645 Pioneer Road after a 911 call reported Kristy Huddleston bleeding at 2:10 a.m. March 23. Police tracked Bourne Huddleston to an Eagle Point residence where he was arrested without incident.
The couple's 10-year-old son was in the Pioneer Road home at the time of the shooting and called police.
Hoppe on Thursday declined to name the second person to testify before a grand jury that Huddleston allegedly solicited in a murder-for-hire scheme. Last Thursday the same jury heard from a number of witnesses, including Michael Yorrie, who testified Huddleston attempted to hire him to kill his wife about five months ago.
The witnesses' statements, along with those of police investigators and state forensic experts, persuaded the jury to hand down its indictment against Huddleston for murder, attempted aggravated murder, attempted murder, soliciting aggravated murder, soliciting murder and possession of a silencer, Hoppe said.
The jury took only two minutes to hand down the additional indictments Thursday. Last week they took one minute longer in indicting Huddleston on the first six counts.
Hoppe said the Measure 11 murder charge and weapons charge are related to Bourne Huddleston's alleged shooting of his wife. The Measure 11 attempted murder and attempted aggravated murder charges, as well as the soliciting charges, are related to the "murder-for-hire type scenario" in which Huddleston allegedly attempted to hire someone to kill his wife, Hoppe said.
Case law allows the state to seek consecutive sentences on the Measure 11 charges should Huddleston be convicted, he said.
According to information obtained from a probable cause affidavit filed by the District Attorney's Office, Huddleston told police he was in the bedroom at their Pioneer Road home when Kristy Huddleston shot herself in the head in front of him. However, the affidavit stated Huddleston's "actions do not fit his version of events."
A brief summary describes Huddleston's assertions: "Suspect admits to rendering no first aid, washing her hands as well as his own, leaving the residence without calling 9-1-1, leaving his 10-year-old son in the residence, taking the weapon from the scene, disassembling the gun and throwing part of it out the window of his truck near White City, and placing part of it in bushes at an address in Eagle Point."
The weapon was believed to be a Sigma 9 mm, according to the affidavit.
The Huddlestons' son is currently living with Kristy Huddleston's mother, Hoppe said.
Huddleston is being held in the Jackson County Jail without bail. A pretrial hearing has been set for April 16.
Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.