|
|
|
MailTribune.com
  • Huddleston sentenced to life for wife's murder

    Convicted wife-killer silent as sentence handed down
  • Bourne Paraday Huddleston was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison Thursday in Jackson County Circuit Court for murdering his wife, Kristy Huddleston, and leaving her body for their 10-year-old son to find.
    • email print
  • »  RELATED CONTENT
  • Bourne Paraday Huddleston was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison Thursday in Jackson County Circuit Court for murdering his wife, Kristy Huddleston, and leaving her body for their 10-year-old son to find.
    Judge Lorenzo Mejia and state prosecutors David Hoppe and Laura Cromwell called Huddleston the worst human being they have ever come across in their legal careers.
    When given the opportunity by Mejia to speak before his sentencing, Huddleston declined, never making eye contact with his wife's friends and family members sitting inside a packed courtroom.
    Dressed in a black suit and tie during his appearances at the eight-day trial, Huddleston, 45, shuffled into the courtroom Thursday in jail garb and orange Crocs for his sentencing.
    "I have spent the last 11 years prosecuting rapists, murderers and child molesters. (Huddleston) is probably the worst human being I have ever dealt with," Hoppe said, in front of a packed courtroom.
    Kristy Huddleston, 34, worked as a nurse care manager at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. She helped returning military veterans reintegrate into the community following their service.
    Her family addressed the court during Huddleston's sentencing hearing Thursday.
    Melissa Esselstyn, 31, Kristy Huddleston's younger sister, called Bourne Huddleston a monster.
    "This has been the single most horrifying experience for our family," she said, describing her sister as "fierce, beautiful, intelligent. ... I will never be the same without her."
    "I looked up to Bourne, I saw him as a warrior," Melissa Esselstyn said, inside the courtroom. "I thought he would be there to protect my sister, and in turn he was the one to take her from us."
    Dwight Esselstyn, Kristy's father, told Mejia he couldn't understand how Bourne Huddleston could be so cold and heartless.
    "Every day, not a minute has passed where I haven't thought and wondered why. How come? Why did this happen? How could he be such a cold-blooded killer?" Dwight Esselstyn said. "I mean, all the things that we did together, we hunted together, we fished together, we worked out together, he lived in my house for months, we ate at the same table."
    Denise Esselstyn, Kristy's mother, said it will be hard for her to ever forgive Bourne Huddleston for what he put her grandson — Kristy's son — through on the night of the murder.
    Jurors listened to a 911 call that captured the attempts of the 10-year-old boy as he tried to save his mother's life by performing CPR after finding her bloody body covered with a sheet and pillow inside the dark bedroom.
    Denise Esselstyn said the sound of her grandson's scream during that 911 call haunts her and always will.
    "My main concern has been my grandson — what he went through for months and months. Nightmares, waking up terrified that his father was going to come back and kill him, too," she said. "I don't know why he couldn't be a man and just walk away from my daughter instead of taking her life and putting my grandson through that."
    A jury on Wednesday found Huddleston guilty on all 10 charges for which he stood trial: murder, attempted murder, attempt to commit murder, four counts of solicitation to commit murder, two counts of attempted aggravated murder and possession of a silencer.
    Huddleston shot his wife in the head with a silenced 9 mm pistol on March 23, 2012, inside their home on Pioneer Road outside Medford. He tried to hire two men, one a classmate at Rogue Community College, to kill Kristy before taking matters into his own hands.
    Under Oregon's Measure 11 law, Huddleston is required to serve a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years without parole before he can be considered for release.
    Jackson County deputy district attorneys Hoppe and Cromwell sought to have Huddleston's two attempted aggravated murder charges be applied separately from his murder charge — which would have required a 45-year prison sentence without parole under Measure 11 — but a late dispute between the prosecutors and Huddleston's defense attorney, Robert Abel, led Mejia to merge all but the possession of a silencer charge with the murder charge.
    Hoppe and Cromwell argued that the crimes behind the pair of aggravated murder charges against Huddleston were separate from the murder charge, and that he should receive separate sentences for each crime.
    Mejia said the state could appeal the merger, and went on to recommend that Huddleston never receive parole.
    If the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision ever does release Huddleston, he will spend the rest of his life under post-prison supervision, Mejia ordered.
    "I have never made that recommendation. ... I have never seen anyone like you," Mejia said. "You are a person who is amoral, anti-social, you have a lack of ability to love, to be empathetic to anybody and your primary and only concern is yourself and your needs. ... I feel sorry for your mother, I feel sorry for your son. I have no sympathy for you, sir."
    Mejia also ordered Huddleston to pay about $8,150 in restitution and, reluctantly, because he saw it as frivolous, sentenced him to 30 days in jail and two years of post-prison supervision for possession of a silencer.
    "It is my hope and desire that you spend the rest of your life in prison," Mejia said.
    Huddleston, who served in the Marine Corps from 1988 to 2009, deployed for two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.
    Huddleston's sister, Genetta Huddleston-Coradetti, 44, of Florida, will go to trial later this year for allegedly conspiring to help her brother hire a hit man to kill one of the original would-be hit men who was cooperating with police and planned to testify against Bourne Huddleston, records show.
    Her scheduled nine-day trial on three counts each of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit murder and solicitation of murder is set to begin Sept. 2 in Jackson County Circuit Court.
    Huddleston originally was scheduled to be tried along with Huddleston-Coradetti, but their cases were severed at Huddleston-Coradetti's request, court records show.
    Hoppe and Cromwell are also assigned to prosecute Huddleston-Coradetti, records show.
    Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-776-4471 or swheeler@mailtribune.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/swhlr.
Reader Reaction

      calendar