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Tacoa Talley found guilty of murder for the death of his girlfriend's stepmother

Jury deliberations begin in Tacoa Talley murder trial
Jury deliberations begin in Tacoa Talley murder trial
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That is the verdict reached by the jury in the Tacoa Talley trial.

Talley is accused of helping his girlfriend, Samantha Bevans kill her stepmother, Jodie on July 14th, 2022.

Two very different closing arguments this morning from the prosecution and defense.

The prosecution says Samantha could not carry out crime alone, it was Tacoa who did all the work.

The defense says it is simple, the wrong man is facing murder charges and convicting Talley would put the wrong person behind bars.

Assistant Iowa Attorney General Monty Platz told the jury Tacoa overpowered Jodie, who was over 6 feet tall.

They planned to steal money hidden in a safe.

They say Jayson Wells, who Tacoa and Samantha met at a truck stop and did drugs with, was forced to give them his car to commit the murder.

Platz says when the two returned Tacoa told Jayson to burn his shirt to allegedly get rid of evidence.

"So, today is a day we give them something back. Give Mr. Tacoa Talley something back, we'll give him back a phrase, a word. We'll give him something back for all he took and that's guilty. You're guilty of murder in the first degree. That's what we'll give back to him for doing this to this woman," said Platz.

Defense attorney Nichole Watt said Samantha was the one who wanted Jodie dead.

And her father, Mike, who took the stand on Wednesday, testified to Samantha being the one to steal items from the house.

The defense also tried to discredit the states star witness, Jayson Wells, saying he had a lot of chances to get away from the two.

She said security camera footage showed wells leaving and coming back many times.

Watt said investigators did not check for DNA, especially on the window the state says was used to break into the home.

"Your role is to find the truth if you can. Figure it out. But most importantly is to do justice. And so we ask, to find him not guilty." said Watt

The jury broke for deliberation just after 11 a.m. and returned with a verdict shortly before 2p.

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Talley will be sentenced on June 2nd.

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