Monday, March 21, 2011

Bethesda Cops: Black Yoga Store Worker Murdered White Colleague, Made Up Story about Masked Rapist-Killers, in Order to Avoid Jail for Thefts

Murder victim Jayna Murray.

By Nicholas Stix
Revised at 10:08 p.m., on Monday, February 21, 2011.

It was a strange story that Brittany Norwood had told Bethesda detectives, because it contradicted all known profiles and stereotypes. In the real world, criminals follow certain profiles and stereotypes most of the time. But Norwood’s story didn’t make any sense.

She told police that she and her colleague, Jayna Murray, had closed the Yoga store they worked in at 9 p.m., locked up at 9:45 p.m., and began heading home, but that one of them then remembered she’d left something behind, called the other, and met there.

They unlocked the store, and were immediately fallen upon by two masked intruders who robbed the store, and raped and brutally beat the women, killing Murray.

The store, Lululemon Athletica, is in a target-rich environment, full of shops patronized by the well-to-do, and next to an Apple store, so why would two robbers target the Yoga shop?

Murder suspect Brittany Norwood.

Both victims in Bethesda yoga store attack were beaten, raped

Dan Morse, Monday, March 14, 8:58 PM (Washington Post)

The masked assailants who slipped into a Bethesda yoga store raped two workers, beat one of them to death and beat and bound the other, Montgomery County police said Monday.

It was the first time that police have said how Jayna T. Murray was killed.

Police have collected forensic evidence from the store but lack video surveillance and have not formed a solid theory about why the attack happened. But they think the attack was random and have found no evidence that either victim knew the attackers.

“We have no indication at this point that this was anything but a random crime of opportunity,” Montgomery County Police Chief J. Thomas Manger said Monday, as officials announced a $136,000 reward for help in solving the case.

Manger also provided a more exact time line of the slaying than had been released previously:

At 9 p.m. Friday, Murray, 30, and a fellow employee closed the Bethesda Row yoga store Lululemon Athletica. At 9:45 p.m., they set the alarm, locked the store and left.

A short time later, one of the women realized she had left something behind, called her co-worker and the two met back at the store. They entered the front door at 10:05 p.m., Manger said.

“We believe that the two suspects in this case followed them in just seconds after the two victims entered the store,” he said.

The men wore dark clothing, gloves and ski masks, Manger said. One is thought to be 6 feet tall, the other 5 feet 3.

Both women — one age 27, the other 30 — were violently attacked. Murray received “catastrophic” injuries that rattled even longtime law enforcement officers, sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing said.

The surviving woman was discovered Saturday morning after another employee came to open the store. It is unclear whether she couldn’t move because she was so tightly bound, unconscious or both. She was hospitalized and her condition continues to improve, police said.

The store is adjacent to an Apple retail outlet, which began selling its hot new iPad 2 about 5 p.m. Friday. That has led some to speculate that the assailants wanted to be near the store at closing time, 9 p.m., to rob customers going to their vehicles.

But the sources said they’ve uncovered no evidence to support the theory. The draw of many well-heeled Apple customers might be a coincidence, they said….

The answer, according to police, is that Norwood had been stealing from the store, and planned and carried out the murder and fake rape(?)-robbery, in order to avoid going to jail for theft.

Makes perfect sense. Why settle for a larceny rap, and an almost certain sentence of probation, when you can go all the way to murder one, and be eligible for the death penalty?

Former Federal Way high-school soccer standout charged in D.C.-area murder
By Eric Tucker, AP, Seattle Times

Brittany Norwood is accused of killing a co-worker in Maryland last week.

A former standout high-school soccer player from Federal Way has been charged with murder in the death of a co-worker in an affluent suburb of Washington, D.C.

Police in Bethesda, Md., said Brittany Norwood, 28, a 2000 graduate of Decatur High School in Federal Way, made up a story about being attacked inside a yoga-clothing store where she worked to cover up the bludgeoning and stabbing death of co-worker Jayna Murray, 30, of Arlington, Va.

Norwood, who went on to play soccer at Stony Brook University in New York, told police on March 12 that two masked men had entered the Lululemon Athletica store in Bethesda the night before and attacked and sexually assaulted her and Murray. The next morning, another store employee found Murray dead in the shop and Norwood injured and bound.

But after six days of investigation, police now believe that neither woman was sexually assaulted and that Norwood killed Murray after a dispute, according to Montgomery County Police Chief J. Thomas Manger.

Norwood was arrested Friday and charged with first-degree murder, the chief said at a news conference. She is being held at the Montgomery County detention center in Rockville.

Manger said Norwood's account didn't mesh with forensics and medical evidence that police recovered.

Manger said police found only two sets of footprints inside the store, contradicting accounts that more people were inside, and that workers at the adjacent Apple store reported hearing two women arguing.

He also said blood and forensics evidence believed to be connected to Norwood were found inside Murray's car several blocks from the store.

Asked to explain the evidence, detectives said Norwood said the two assailants let her leave the store but told her to come back in 10 minutes or they'd kill her, according to court records.

Officials said Saturday that detectives are looking into whether the killing stemmed from Norwood "being suspected of stealing merchandise." A police official said Norwood has a Washington state address.

Thanks to reader-researcher "W."


Anonymous said...

Mediocre article. You should take a journalism class. What does the race of the parties involved have to do with what happened? Try again.

Anonymous said...

It turned out not to be a "random crime of opportunity." I just saw this murder covered on Jane Velez-Mitchell's Headline News show.

David In TN

Nicholas said...


You sound like a journalism commissar, er, professor.

"What does the race of the parties involved have to do with what happened?"

Since the black was charged, obviously nothing! And if the white had been charged with killing the black-everything! I've got the drill down pat.

Is that the best you can do?

Nicholas said...


"It turned out not to be a 'random crime of opportunity.'"

And as we know, leftwing troll notwithstanding, in the context of savage black-on-white attacks, the phrase "random crime" is a favorite MSM and law enforcement red herring, similar to, "They were in the wrong place at the wrong time."

Californian said...

A killing in a yoga store! Is nothing sacred?

Unknown said...

Fuck bitch take journalism.

Unknown said...

She raped herself to do life in prison. Lol.