JONESVILLE — A Lee County man was arrested Monday on murder charges after being indicted a second time in connection with his wife's 2011 shooting death.
Timothy Raymond Carter, 46, 3681 Flanary Bridge Road, Flatwoods, was indicted April 2 on charges of first-degree murder and use of a firearm in commission of a felony.
It was the second time Carter was indicted on those charges. In February 2013, a Lee County grand jury also returned two true bill indictments on Carter for allegedly murdering his wife, Amy Carter.
The Lee County Commonwealth's Attorney's Office dropped those charges in July 2013 because a forensic expert witness it subpoenaed for trial was working as an independent contractor in Afghanistan. The witness has since returned to the United States.
Lee County Commonwealth's Attorney Shawn Hines said he considered the expert's testimony an important part of the prosecution's case.
"The most important thing is that once we had that trial date, we knew the witness would not be available to participate in that trial," Hines said. "I believe he was such an essential witness, that we couldn't go to trial without him. So that was the main concern, not having all of our available evidence and witnesses.
"It was always the intention to bring the charges back when the forensic scientist returned to the country, and that's what we did with this indictment."
Hines said dropping the charges after the case had proceeded to trail would have resulted in them being permanently dismissed.
Hines declined to provide further details on the case due to the pending trial.
Lee County authorities began investigating Timothy Carter following the April 14, 2011, shooting that resulted in his wife's death.
Investigators were made aware of Amy Carter's death when Timothy Carter's mother called Lee County dispatch to report that her daughter-in-law had shot herself at the couple's Flatwoods residence.
Lee County Sheriff Gary Parsons said in 2013 that investigators became suspicious of the self-inflicted gunshot report almost immediately after responding to the scene, due to the placement of evidence and the amount of time that had passed between the shooting and the incident being reported.
Authorities said extensive testing by the Department of Forensic Science led to the investigation stretching nearly two years before the original indictments were sought in 2013.
Parsons acknowledged at the time that the case had been a long and trying period for the victim's family, but he said investigators were attempting to build a case that would "result in a conviction."
Hines expressed similar sentiments regarding the length of the investigation.
"It was such a complicated situation that our office wanted to make sure the case was fully investigated with every possibility to look into," Hines said. "We took the time to make sure we got it right, but it took longer than any of us would have wanted it to take."comments powered by Disqus