Michael Dudley, a man living in Washington state in the United States, was accused of murdering two people who were tenants in a property he owned in 2020.
The 64-year-old suspect may have killed Jessica Lewis and her boyfriend Austin Weiner, 35 and 27, respectively, and put their body parts in some suitcases, found by three youths who uploaded a video, according to the station KING5. Showing their content to Tiktok.
State prosecutors assured that the fatal victims were renting a room in the Dudley estate, located in the city of Burren. However, the landlord allegedly argued with the couple as they were behind in rent.
After the guilty plea, several relatives of the victims wept silently in the courtroom, later expressing their relief at the end of the session.
According to The Seattle Times, Weiner’s mother, Charlene Kriens, said outside court, “I am so grateful that justice has been served … The world is a safer place without Michael Dudley.” We’ll never fully recover, but our family won’t let Michael Dudley take our lives either.”
[Actualización del caso] Michael Lee Dudley, de 62 años, fue acusado formalmente de dos cargos de asesinato en segundo grado por la muerte y desmembramiento de Austin Wenner y Jessica Lewis, cuyos restos fueron encontradas dentro de una maleta. pic.twitter.com/RJDI062YFH
— Mundo Mórbido 💀 (@mundo_morbido) September 12, 2020
Jessica Lewis’s aunt, Gina Jaske, thanked the Seattle Police Detective Corps for quickly solving the case: “I knew in my heart she was guilty from the beginning. I’m so glad it’s over.”
According to the same outlet, Seattle assistant prosecutor Raymond Lee acknowledged that all evidence pointing to Dudley’s guilt was circumstantial, despite the fact that they could never find the weapon that would have killed the couple. : “No offense that’s perfect… (but) the things he missed made a trail that led the police to him.
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However, Dudley’s attorney, Bradley Barshis, criticized the investigation, saying that the evidence was invalid because police found only a small blood stain in the room. The lawyer compared the blood stain to the amount that an average human body can contain, which is equal to five liters.
“There was nothing because nothing happened at my client’s house,” Barshis said.
For now, the trial is expected to end on March 10, the day Dudley will be sentenced, according to the New York Post. He could face life in prison without the right to parole.
Las víctimas fueron la pareja de novios Jessica Lewis y Austin Wenner, quienes fueron desmembrados aproximadamente tres días antes de que fueran encontrados en Duwamish Head, Seattle. pic.twitter.com/5mARrlGW47
— Mundo Mórbido 💀 (@mundo_morbido) August 19, 2020
reconstruction of facts
On 9 June that year, the day of the brawl, a neighbor called the authorities, assuring that he had heard gunshots and a male voice begging to spare his life.
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Prosecutors noted that Dudley shot them both.Then dismembering their lifeless bodies and hiding the parts in several suitcases, which they then threw into seas, rivers and lakes.
Ten days later, a trio of young people dedicated to making videos for TikTok in Seattle found several suitcases containing human body parts, which they recorded and shared on social networks.
Se cree que el asesino dejó la maleta accesible a la vista del público porque quería que fueran encontrados o como una forma de dejar un mensaje macabro. Curiosamente, el usuario llegó a la escena del crimen gracias a la geolocalización de la aplicación Randonautica. pic.twitter.com/SiVz252Y7l
— Mundo Mórbido 💀 (@mundo_morbido) August 19, 2020
Despite criticism over the nature of the footage, the footage garnered up to 30 million views on TikTok. Later, the videos were removed at the request of the next of kin of the victims after the bodies were identified by the authorities.
Prosecutor Lee claimed that a woman, whose identity is not known, had come to Dudley’s home on the day of the crime. Shortly after speaking with police, they reported that the man had multiple scratches and his glasses were broken, In addition, he saw a human hand reaching out from a pile of clothes in the room where the couple were staying.
According to The Seattle Times, prosecutor Lee said in court, “The body would have been in the final stages of rigidity, so a raised hand would not have been inappropriate.”
Similarly, Lee said the citizen saw several weapons in a dishwasher in the house and then got rid of them. He was also in charge of taking photographs of alleged bullet holes in the furniture of the same room.
Weiner’s father, for his part, was concerned about not being able to communicate with his son or his girlfriend, so he personally went to Dudley’s home, who told him that the couple had already moved. However, the relative of the victim realized that there was still a pile of clothes, which belonged to his son.
The prosecutor said, “We know they didn’t have all the money, so why would they leave their personal belongings behind if they left voluntarily?”