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Linda T. JONES

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Parricide - Murder for hire
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: November 7, 1995
Date of arrest: September 14, 1996
Date of birth: May 27, 1947
Victim profile: Jack Jones (her husband)
Method of murder: Beating
Location: Lake Asbury, Clay County, Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to life in prison on November 6, 1997
 
 
 
 
 
 

Linda Jones

Linda and Jack Jones had been married for nearly 30 years. They had two daughters and a dream home in Lake Asbury, Florida.

After the girls left home, Linda took in a teenager from her office, Carrie, giving her a place in the Jones family. Then Linda discovered that Jack and Carrie were having an affair. She was devastated.

Linda threw the 17-year-old out of the house and demanded her husband stop seeing her. For a while, Linda's marriage seemed back on track. Then, she discovered Jack had put Carrie up in an apartment and had even given the girl an engagement ring.

But on November 7, 1995, Jack was beaten to death during a home invasion robbery. A description of the getaway vehicle led police to a man named Donald Bradley, who happened to be one of Linda's clients.

Eventually, the cops arrested Bradley and two accomplices, Brian and Patrick McWhite. The McWhite brothers said the whole attack had been planned by Linda Jones. She was arrested and charged with murder.

Prosecutors argued that Linda, angry over her husband's affair, hired Bradley to kill her husband. With the testimony of the accomplices, the jury convicted Linda and sentenced her to life in prison. For his part in the murder, Bradley received the death penalty.

 
 

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA

DONALD BRADLEY, Appellant,  v.  STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellee.

Case No. 93,373

STATEMENT OF THE CASE

On November 7, 1995, Jack Jones was killed in his home on LakeAsbury during a purported home invasion robbery. On September 14, 1996, the victim's wife, Linda Jones, and Donald Bradley, Brian McWhite, and Patrick White were arrested for the murder.

On September 26, 1996, the Clay County Grand Jury indicted the four suspects. Donald Bradley was charged with first-degree murder, burglary with a dangerous weapon, and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. Linda Jones and Donald Bradley were tried separately. The McWhite brothers pled guilty to third-degree murder and were sentenced to ten and a half years in prison.

On August 5, 1997, the state filed a Notice of Other Crimes, Wrongs, or Acts Evidence, giving notice it intended to introduce evidence of other crimes, including three crimes committed by Linda Jones in August and October of 1995 (making false reports of two burglaries and one sexual assault), and two crimes (malicious injury to property and attempted burglary) committed by Linda Jones, Donald Bradley, Brian McWhite, Patrick McWhite, and Michael Clark on October 31, 1995.

On August 14, 1997, Bradley filed a Motion in Limine, objecting to the introduction of this evidence. After a partial hearing on August 14, 1997, the state filed a proffer of evidence relating to the collateral crimes.

The trial court heard additional argument on August 20, 1997, and denied the motion by written order on May 12, 1998.

On May 8, 1998, the state filed a Second Notice of Other Crimes, Wrongs, or Acts Evidence, giving notice it intended to introduce evidence of five additional crimes committed by Linda Jones (solicitation of Greg Green to kill Jack Jones, solicitation of Dwight Danahoo to kill Jack Jones, solicitation of Dwight Danahoo to beat up or kill Carrie Davis, harrassing phone calls to Carrie Davis, malicious injury of the property of Carrie Davis).

On May 11, 1998, the defense filed a Motion in Limine to the state's Second Notice. After a hearing on May19, 1998, the trial court excluded all the crimes except the October 31, 1995, phone calls.

On January 30, 1998, the defense filed an Amended Motion to Suppress Physical
Evidence (Telephone Records).

On April 28, 1998, the trial court held a hearing on the defendant's motion, which was denied by written order on May 12, 1998.

The guilt phase of Bradley's trial was held May 18-22, 1998. Bradley's motions for judgment of acquittal were denied.

On May 22, 1998, the jury returned a verdict of guilty as charged on all counts.

On May 23, 1998, Bradley file a Motion for New Trial, which was denied. The penalty phase of Bradley's trial was held May 29, 1998. The state presented one witness. The defense presented twelve live witnesses and two by videotape. The jury recommended the death penalty by a 10 to 2 vote.

The trial court held a Spencer hearing on June 18, 1998, and heard argument regarding the appropriate sentence. The state and defense submitted sentencing memoranda. The defense submitted portions of the transcript of Linda Jones' trial, and the trial judge incorporated by reference the remaining portions of the Linda Jones' transcript.

On June 25, 1998, the trial court sentenced Bradley to death.

The court found four aggravating factors: cold, calculated, and premeditated; heinous, atrocious, and cruel; felony murder (burglary); pecuniary gain. The court found two statutory mitigating factors: no significant history of prior criminal activity and Bradley's age of 36.

The court found six non statutorymitigators: that Bradley overcame a chaotic childhood and dysfunctional family life to make real achievements in his adult life; was a good provider and father for his wife and his children, loves his family, and is loved by them; is a hard worker; unselfishly helped other people inside and outside of his family; showed sincere religious faith.

Bradley was sentenced to concurrent thirty-year prison terms on the remaining counts.

STATEMENT OF FACTS

Guilt Phase

The dispatcher received a 911 call from Linda Jones at 8:30p.m. on November 7, 1995, reporting her husband, Jack Jones, had been beaten and was bleeding to death. Linda said three men came in, beat her husband, and robbed them. The men had clubs or a bat and also took her husband’s gun. They were dressed in black and wore ski masks. She said she had been taped and could not get the tape off and had blood all over her.

When Officer Yeager arrived eight minutes later, Linda Jones met him on the front porch. He saw no blood on her nor tape on her hands. She was barefoot. Inside the foyer, the walls and floorwere splattered with blood. Jack Jones' body was on the floor in the den. He was on his back with his hands duct-taped above his head and his feet taped. There was blood on and around the body.

Thomas Waugh, the lead detective, arrived around 9:00 p.m. He found no signs of forced entry. There was evidence of a strugglein the foyer area. There was duct tape on the floor in the first bedroom down the hallway and rolled-up duct tape on the floor in the master bath. A purse and jewelry lay on the floor in the master walk-in closet along with the victim’s wallet containing a $100 bill.

Phones in two bedrooms were still intact. A bloody washcloth was in the sink in one of the bathrooms. In the garage, a piece of duct tape had been stuffed inside a cinder block that was part of the wall.

The medical examiner testified that Jack Jones died from blunt trauma. He suffered five or six severe blows to the head and eight severe blows to his back, as well as some less severe arm and leg injuries. The trunk injuries were caused by a cylindrical instrument. The head injuries could have been caused by a gun or some other object. The arm, leg, and back injuries would not have caused unconsciousness, but any of the blows to the back of the head very likely would have rendered him unconscious immediately, and he would have died fairly quickly thereafter. None of the blows was administered after he was dead.

Brian McWhite testified that he was 21 at the time of the homicide and working for Bradley in Bradley’s landscaping business. The night of the homicide, Donald called Brian and asked if he and his brother, Patrick, wanted to make a $100 each to help him beat up a guy. They agreed, and not long after, Donald came over in his maroon van. He told the McWhites he was doing a favor for a friend whose husband was cheating on her. She wanted her husband beat up so he would stop seeing the girl. Donald was going to pretend to be the girl’s boyfriend and tell the husband to quit messing with her.

As they left the house, they grabbed a stick of wood from the house and a pair of football gloves. The wood was about 2" indiameter on one end and 7-8" diameter on the other end.

They stopped at WalMart, where Donald bought ski masks. Before getting to WalMart, Donald called Linda Jones on his cell phone to find out if Mr. Jones was home.Brian knew who Donald called because he heard Donald say Linda's name. Brian knew Linda did Donald’s taxes but had never met her or been to her house.

After the call, Donald told them Mr. Jones was not home yet. He told them Linda was going to leave the door unlocked and the front porchlights off. Patrick and Brian were to go in the front; Donald would go in the side door because there would be gun on the kitchen counter in a bag.

Mr. and Mrs. Jones would be in the living room watching TV. Donald called Linda two more times. Brian heard Donald say it was not like she said it was going to be because Mr. Jones was not home.

Donald made the final call when they got to the house. Donald said something about tax papers, meaning Mr. Jones was home.

Brian and Patrick went in the front door, and Donald went through the side door from the garage. Either Donald or Patrick had the stick. They also had duct tape from the van. They had on masks and gloves and were dressed in black clothing. Mr. Jones was in a chair, Mrs. Jones was on a couch.

Mrs. Jones made eye contact but did not say anything. Mr. Jones looked back and saw them, asked Brian who he was, and then rushed at Brian swinging. Brian stepped back and heard Patrick say, "I got him."

Then Donald hit Mr. Jones in the head with the stick. Mr. Jones lost his balance, and Donald hit him again. Mrs. Jones had walked up by then. Donald pulled the gun out and was talking to Mr. Jones. They taped Mrs. Jones but not tightly. Donald cocked the gun and pointed it at Mr. Jones’ chest and head. He tried to shoot it but it wouldnot fire.

At one point, Brian felt like Mr. Jones had had enough. Heasked Donald not to hit him anymore and asked him what he wanted. Patrick asked Donald to stop, said it was over, but Donald did not stop. As far as he could remember, Mr. Jones got taped up after Donald stopped beating him.

Donald told Brian to go tothe room and take something. Brian took some money and jewelry from a back room.

They had to tape Mrs. Jones’ mouth twice because she took it off. At first, she asked who they were, but she seemed to be acting. When Mr. Jones was being beaten, she said "hey, stop, stop," then said nothing. She saw the whole thingand was right there beside them.

Donald was talking during the beating, at times to Mrs. Jones. Before they left,Donald cut the tape on Mrs. Jones’ hands with a small knife. At Donald’s instruction, Brian and Patrick tore the kitchen phone off the wall and threw it into the sink.

Donald drove off with the van lights off. Brian tossed the duct tape in some water on the way back to Donald’s house. Donald told them if Mr. Jones died, they would be in big trouble and could not tell anyone. They drove to Donald’s house and Donald cleaned the blood out of the van. Donald took their bloody clothes, put them in a garbage bag, and gave them some shorts and a T-shirt.

Brian heard Donald’s wife’s voice but Donald told her to go back in the house. Donald took Brian and Patrick home. Their clothes, shoes, and the stick were burned in a burn barrel outside the McWhite house. Donald kept the gun and said he was going to stick it in some mud.

Brian worked with Donald the next day and for another month after that. They agreed that if one of them got caught, he would take the fall and not say anything. Donald said he would not talk because he wanted to get paid by Mrs. Jones, who was getting a lot of money from the insurance people. Brian ultimately got caught because of a
fingerprint he left after hetook off his glove.

On cross-examination, Brian said he did not hear Donald call anyone to ask for directions. Donald used a flip phone not a bag phone. He did not remember Donald calling Michael Clark or telling him what Clark said. He did not remember Donald calling someone named “Sis” or calling Cindy Bradley. He did not remember telling Detective Waugh he hit Jack Jones two or three times. He took off his glove because he got hit on the arm. He took the other glove off later because he wanted to get caught. He got scared because Donald "was hitting me and I got tripped out." He thought Donald "was going to like start shooting everybody." He did not remember telling Detective Waugh that Valerie came into the garage and walked around while they cleaned up. He never told Waugh that Valerie washed the clothes that night.

Patrick McWhite testified that he was 17 at the time of the homicide and attending Orange Park High School.When he got home on November 7, 1995, his brother asked if he wanted to make some money. Brian said they were going to "jump this guy" meaning beat him up. Donald came over, told them to grab some gloves and the stick by the back door, and they left.

They stopped at WalMart, where Donald went inside and bought ski masks. At one point, Donald called someone on his cell phone to get directions to the house. Patrick heard him say "Sis" a couple of times. Donald made several other calls. One call was about some tax papers, which was the code to go in the house. One was to Michael Clark to ask if he wanted to come with them.

Donald made the last call when he pulled into the driveway. When they got to the house, Donald said the front door would be open and told Patrick and Brian where to go to avoid the floodlights. Donald was going through the garage to retrieve a pistol from the kitchen.

When they got inside, they saw their reflection in a mirror. Mr. Jones did too and came towards them. He and Brian started throwing punches. Patrick stood frozen with the stick in his hands. Then Donald came in and hit Jones in the back of the head with the butt of the gun. Jones fell down, and Patrick and Donald dragged him into the other room. More blows were exchanged between Jones and Donald. Donald then started hitting Jones with the gun and kicking him.

Donald took the stickfrom Patrick and told Patrick to find something to take. Patrick and Brian went down the hallway. Then Patrick went back to the front room. The lady was standing on the stair not saying anything.he was not taped at that point. Donald was hitting Mr. Jones. Donald told Patrick again to go find something, and Patrick went back down the hallway.

He went through some drawers and purses but did not find anything, then returned to the den. The lady was still standing on the step. He heard her say "stop" once. Donald was still beating the guy, who was in a ball. Donald told Patrick to shut the lady up, so he went over to her.

When he touched her, she flopped to the floor. Donald threw Patrick the tape, and he taped her mouth. Patrick went back to the master bedroom where he found $13 and some jewelry. When he returned to the living room, the lady was crawling, trying to see into the room where Donald and Jones were, her feet and hands still tied. Donald told Patrick to tape the man’s hands, which he did.

Donald continued to hit him. Patrick went back down the hallway. When he came back, Donald was still hitting the man. Donald clicked the gun to the man's head but it did not go off.

At one point, Brian taped the lady. Before they left, Donald cut the lady’s tape. The man was still in a ball when they left.

After they left, Donald said, "I think I killed him."

On the way back to Donald’s house, Brian threw the duct tape in some water. They parked in Donald’s garage and cleaned up. Valerie Bradley brought a bucket of cold water to the door. Donald and Brian changed clothes and burned the clothes they had been wearing. They cleaned the stick and took it back to the McWhite house. Patrick had not seen it since.

On cross-examination, Patrick said Donald offered him $250. Patrick was 6'2" and weighed 250 pounds. He grabbed some old football gloves before they left so he would not hurt his hands. He told Donald they did not need the stick but took it anyway. They wore ski masks so the man would not recognize them. The plan wasto beat him up, not kill him.

Donald used a flip phone not a bag phone. Patrick may have hit the man once. Valerie did not come in the garage but to the door. Patrick thought she saw them. Mark Cornett, an Orange Park police officer, was a family friend of the McWhites. He grew up with the boys’ father, Eddy, and had a special relationship with Patrick, taking him fishing, hunting, and to football games. Cornett’s department was not involved in the Jones murder and Cornett did not know anything about it except what he had read in the newspaper.

On September 14, 1996, the sheriff asked him to help with Brian’s arrest. Cornett knew where Brian lived, and they arrested Brian around 5 a.m. Cornett stayed at the station until 8 a.m., then went home to bed. No one told him anything about the case.

Shortly afterwards, Detective Waugh called and asked Cornett to bring Eddy McWhite to Green Cove Springs, which Cornett did. Cornett then took Eddy home. A few minutes after he dropped Eddie off, Eddie called and said Patrick had something to tell him. Eddie brought Patrick to Cornett’s house, and Cornett drove Patrick to Green Cove Springs. Patrick started talking, so Cornett read him his rights. Cornett turned Patrick over to Waugh and told themwhat he had said.

Michael Clark testified that he was working for Donald in November of 1995. He got the job from Donald's sister, Cindy Bradley, who lived across the street from Clark's parents.

On November 7, 1995, which was Clark's birthday, hisparents had a birthday party for him. Around 7:30 or 8:00 p.m., while he was at the party, Brian McWhite and Donald Bradley called on a cell phone. They wished him a happy birthday and asked if he wanted to come hang out with them.

Donald mentioned that he wasgoing to Lake Asbury. Jill Jones, the daughter of Linda and Jack Jones, testified that her father carried a gun. When he got home, he would put the gun down on an island in the kitchen.

Janice Cole testified she had known Linda Jones since second grade and Jack Jones since junior high. She was the maid of honor at their wedding, and the families did things together.

On either November 6 or 7, 1995, Linda called Janice. She told Janice she was not getting a divorce. She already had told Janice about Jack's affair. When she called November 6 or 7, she was upset about money problems. Jack had been buying things for Carrie, including a diamond ring. Linda said Jack would be home that evening or the next to talk about the bills and finances.

Linda was very upset about all she had been through. She said she could take a gun and kill Jack and get away with it because of everything that had happened. Janice told Linda she was crazy, there was life after divorce. When she told Linda she knew a good man, Lacey Mayhan, a lawyer, Linda responded, "Oh, I thought you meant something else."

Linda said she would lose $500,000 in life insurance if she got a divorce and she "wasn’t going to fat and forty alone." Jack Jones had a life insurance policy worth $125,000 which had been established in 1992. He also had a company policy at Key Buick, where he was the service manager, which was worth $175,000 and had a double indemnity clause. Linda Jones was the beneficiary of both policies.

Ernie Zweifel testified that he lived two houses down and across the street from the Jones. Zweifel said he saw a maroon 1994 or 1995 Nissan van go by his driveway at a high rate of speed with the lights off around 8:30 p.m. the night Jack Jones was murdered. Zweifel recognized the year and model because he had been shopping for a van. The van appeared to be coming from two houses down. The windows were tinted, so he could not see inside.

About twenty minutes later, the police appeared. Around 9:30 p.m. that night, Zweifel gave the police a statement about what he had seen.

Over defense objection, four witnesses testified about an incident that took place on October 31, 1995, one week before Jack Jones was murdered.

Brian McWhite said he, Donald Bradley, Michael Clark, and Patrick McWhite went to an apartment in Mandarin in Donald’s van. They went to the door and no one answered. Then they broke some windows. Donald made some calls that night but Brian did not remember who he called.

Patrick McWhite said they went to Mandarin to talk to a girl. They were going to knock on the door and then go in and take whatever they wanted. Donald was going to talk to the girl. After they arrived, Donald learned from a phone call that he made outside the apartment that someone else was there.

Eventually, Jack Jones left the apartment. The knocked on the door but no one answered. Donald told them to break some windows of a car that was on bricks, which they did.

Michael Clark said they went to the apartment to steal jewelry. Donald knew jewelry was there. No one was supposed to be home. When they got there, a man and woman were there. They satin Donald's van for forty-five minutes, and Donald made several phone calls. Michael called his mother, whose birthday it was, to say he would be late for her birthday party.

After the man left, they knocked on the door but no one came. They got back in the van, and Donald placed a call. Then Brian and Patrick got out and broke some windows of the girl’s car. Donald dropped them off atBrian’s house.

Carrie Davis, 21, said she began working for Linda Jones in October 1994. She moved in with Linda and her husband in February.

During his testimony, Waugh referred to a transcript of the tape recording Bradley had made of the interview. because of difficulty at home. She had not met Jack Jones before that. She moved out in July 1995, a week after she and Jackgot involved.Linda found out about the affair the day Carrie moved out and was very angry. Carrie and Jack planned to marry. They leased an apartment in both their names.

Jack usually came over in the mornings around 5:30 a.m., they would have lunch together, then he would come over after work and stay until 6:30 or7:00. He bought her a wedding set on October 13, 1995.

On October 31, 1995, Jack left her apartment around 8:30 p.m. She receivedh arassing phone calls from Linda Jones before and after he left. After he left, some adults knocked on the door. She called 911.

The next day her car windows were busted and the brake lines were cut. Detective Waugh testified that he and Lieutenant Redmond went to Donald Bradley’s home at 8:30 a.m. on January 22, 1996, with a warrant to seize Bradley's van. Donald lived in the Loch Rane, a gated community. Waugh he did not call Donald before he showed up and had never talked to Donald before. The family was having breakfast when they arrived. Waughand Redmond waited while they finished eating, then spoke with Donald. Donald's wife, Valerie, was present during some of the conversation. Donald taped the conversation.

Waugh told Donald he had no problem with Donald taping the conversation. Waugh began by asking routine questions, such as date of birth, phone numbers, employment history. Donald said he had two cell phones, one with the number 707-6889, used by his foremen Michael Clark and Brian McWhite, the other a flip phone with the number 858-0347, which Donald used.

Donald toldWaugh he knew Linda Jones well. She had been doing his taxes forseveral years. He last talked to her three weeks earlier. When asked where he was on November 7, 1995, Bradley could not recall but offered to pull out records to see what his work schedule was and "go from there."

Waugh then told Bradley three phone calls had been made from his cell phone, number 858-0347, to Linda Jones’ home the night of the murder, at 7:35, 8:06 and 8:17 p.m. Donald got up and got his calendar. There was no entry for November 7.

The entry for November 6 was "Camelot Sevilla, Party by the Sea." Regarding the phone calls, Donald said he was supposed to pickup some tax papers from under neath the doormat at Linda's office that night. He did not get the papers or Linda messed up, so he called her about the papers, then came home and ran some errands. She said she forgot the papers and offered to leave them again.

The 7:30 call may have been the first time he called when he realized the papers were not there. He called her again after doing errands, then came home. The only thing Linda talked about when he called was the tax papers.

After he got home, he gave his sister, Cynthia, the cell phone, and she left for Middleburg. He said he was not sure if he made the cell phonecalls that night or if his sister made the calls. But he did call Linda’s house asking about the tax papers and he ran an errand, then he watched the second half of a program by Danielle Steele. His sister was waiting for him to come back from the errand, so hecould not have gone much farther than Linda's workplace and Winn-Dixie and back. 

Before he left, Waugh told Donald that Linda Jones was lying about her involvement in her husband’s death, that she was "knee-deep in the middle of this thing and she sucked other people knee-deep in" the situation.

Waugh told Bradley he had several theories about what happened: Either people went in there to teach Jack alesson and things got out of hand or somebody went in there to teach him a lesson and Linda finished him off. He did not know which was true but he knew Linda was involved.

Before Waugh left, he made it he thought Donald's van was involved and that Donald, too, was involved in some fashion. After he told Donald he would be looking for blood and other evidence in the van, Donald said the van had been detailed four or five times since November 7, 1995.

The state introduced the following summaries of phone records into evidence: All phone calls from Linda Jones’ cell phone to Donald Bradley’s cell phone or home phone starting October 31, 1995, until July 10, 1996; all calls from Linda Jones’ cell phone on October 31st, 1995; all calls from Donald’s cell phone, 858-0347, on October 31, 1995; all calls from Linda Jones’ cell phone on November 7, 1995; all calls from Donald’s cell phone on November7, 1995; all calls from Donald’s cell phone to Linda’s Jones' home or cell phone or Gupton & Gupton, where she was employed.

Irene Sharkey worked the security gate at Loch Rane the day Waugh interviewed Donald. Sharkey testified that Valerie Bradley called at 11:24 a.m. and asked them to admit Cindy Bradley. Cindy arrived at 11:43 a.m., left at 2:20 p.m., came back at 2:26 p.m.,and left again at 2:31 p.m. Valerie also called at 12:28 p.m. and asked that Linda Jones be admitted.

Jones arrived at 12:40 and left at 2:19. The state rested. Officer Cornett testified that he spoke to Patrick and Brian McWhite the day they were arrested. Patrick said Donald burned the stick and a bag of bloody clothing the night of the murder. Brian told Cornett Donald demanded Pat's boots sometime after that night and burned them.

John Ring, from the Sheriff’s Office, testified that in one bedroom of the Jones’ home, the shower appeared to have been recently used. The curtain was wet, the inside shower was wet, and the mirrors were steamy.

Valerie Bradley said she and Donald had been married since 1994. They had five children, his three, her one, and one together. Donald owned a landscaping and lawn maintenance business.

On November 7, 1995, Donald went to work. He usually got home about between 6:00 and 7:00 p.m. It was not unusual for him to call on his way home to ask her to open the garage door and make sure the kids’ toys were out of the way so he could back his trailer and truck into the driveway.

On November 7, 1995, Cindy Bradley came by the house around 7p.m., about when Donald got home. Charles Shoup called around 8p.m. Valerie answered the phone and called Donald to the phone, just as Donald was leaving. Donald Shoup he would call him later.

Their plan that night was to watch the second part of a movie they had watched the night before, Nothing Lasts Forever. The movie started at 9:00 and lasted until 11:00 p.m. Donald left around 8:00 and was back ten to fifteen minutes before the movie started. He brought snacks and food and milk from Winn-Dixie.

They watched the movie together until 11:00 p.m., then went to bed. Valerie did not see Patrick or Brian McWhite that night.

On cross-examination, Valerie said their only income was from her husband’s business. When asked whether her husband’s business income for 1994 was only $9,100, she said she and the IRS were discussing that because the IRS felt they owed $13,000. When asked if she signed the tax return, she said she signed whatever "Linda had arranged."

Linda did everyone in the family’s tax returns. Valerie helped get the documents together and kept the books for Donald’s business. She did not know whether Donald stopped to pick up the tax papers on his way home from work or from the errand, but she knew he did not get them because she remembered complaining to him about.

Valerie said she was presently under arrest, charged with accessary after the fact to first-degree murder. She had been arrested the same day as Donald.She did not remember who called the front gate on January 22, 1996, to let Cindy Bradley in. She did not recall if Cindy and Linda both came over that day.

She had checked to see what she and Donald were doing on November 7, 1995, before Waugh came over because Waugh already had questioned Cindy and other family members and she knew he come to their house.

The TV schedule for November 7, 1995, was admitted into evidence, along with a stipulation that on that date, from 9:00 to 11:00 p.m., Channel 4 showed a movie, Nothing Lasts Forever, which was part two of a two-part miniseries.

Charles Shoup testified that Donald was landscaping his home in November of 1995. During that time, Shoup called Donald often, usually at home and in the evenings. He did not remember if he called Donald on November 7. A page from Shoup’s phone bill was admitted into evidence, showing someone placed a call from Shoup’s phone to Bradley’s home phone November 7, 1995, at 7:54 p.m. The connection lasted half a minute.

The jury heard a videotaped deposition of Cindy Bradley taken December 19, 1997. She was 41 years old at the time and terminally ill. She ran a lawn maintenance business with Evans Howard. At the time of Jack Jones’ murder, she and Linda Jones were best friends. They saw each other every day and talked on the phone several times a day.

During that time period, Cindy had use of a cell phone in Evans Howard’s name with the number 659-9222. The phone was not working on November 7, 1995, because the bill had not been paid, so Cindy used Donald’s phone that day. When shown the outgoing calls from Donald’s flip phone, 858-0347, on November 7 and 8, 1995, Cindy said she placed the first call to Gupton & Gupton, where Linda Jones worked.

Linda was busy, so she never spoke to her. She said the 12:42 p.m. call to Donald’s house could have beenplaced by either her or Donald. The 6:53 p.m. call to Donald’s house would have been Donald calling Valerie to get the kids’ junk out of the driveway. The 6:57 p.m. call would have been Cindy alling Valerie as a joke. Cindy made the 7:35 p.m. call to Linda’s home. She got the answering machine, so she dialed Linda’s car phone but did not make contact.

At that time, she was probably on her way to a Bible study meeting in Middleburg, and was calling Linda to meet her after the Bible study, which was near Linda's home. At 7:53 p.m., Cindy called Michael Clark to say happy birthday and also spoke to her older daughter, Katisha.

At 7:55 p.m., she called her home, probably calling her mom and her youngest daughter, Ginger, on her way home from the Bible study. At 8:06 p.m., she called Linda again but did not make contact. She also made the next call to Linda.

She made the two calls to Donald's house at 8:39 p.m. and 8:50 p.m. but got his answering machine. She dropped the phone off the next day after learning Jack was killed.

On cross-examination, Cindy said the Bible study usually lasted from 7:00 or 7:15 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. but it may have been only twenty minutes that night because they did not have a regular meeting. She called Michael Clark not long after she got to the Bible study. Donald did not call and ask for directions that night.

Cindy was aware that Donald was trying to get the tax return from Linda's office that night and could not get it because it was not where she said she would leave it.

On January 22, 1996, Cindy went to Donald’s houseand listened to the tape of him being questioned by the police. Linda, Valerie, Cindy, and Donald listened. Richard Gupton sat out in the car. Cindy had used Donald’s phone five to eight times in November.

The defense introduced the record of a phone bill from EvansHoward’s cell phone for number 697-9222 from October 9, 1995, to November 8, 1995, along with a stipulation that the bill was valid.

This was the route Patrick and Brian McWhite testified they took to the Jones residence the night of the homicide. There were no calls during that billing period after October 18, 1995.

Katisha Gussman, Cindy Bradley's daughter, testified that she was at Michael Clark’s parent’s home on November 7, 1995, for Michael’s birthday party. Her mother called and talked to Michael, then to her. Her mother spoke to Michael for ten to fifteen minutes. Katisha could not tell if the call was from a cell phone.

The party started between 5:00 and 5:30 p.m. The phone call from Cindy came around 6:30 p.m. To her knowledge, Cindy did not call any other time that night.

Donald Bradley’s mother said she had never heard Donald or anyone else in the family call Cindy "Sis." Cletis Watson, a public defender investigator, said he drove from the McWhites' house on Railroad Avenue to the victim’s home on Lake Asbury. He drove two routes. The second route, taking 218 to Blanding Boulevard, was twenty-two miles.

Detective Waugh said when he talked to Patrick and Brian McWhite on September 14, one or both said after they got back toDonald’s house, Valerie came out into the garage while they were cleaning up. Patrick said he hit Jones with a fist. Brian said he hit Jones a couple or three times.

Steve Leary, the FDLE analyst who processed the crime scene, collected two pieces of tape from next to Jack Jones’ body, which he sent to the crime lab to be processed for latent prints. Dawn Walters, an FDLE print specialist, found a latent palm print on the tape, which she was unable to match, after comparing it with prints from Jack Jones, Donald Bradley, Linda Jones, Patrick and Brian McWhite, Officer Yeager, Randolph Brunson, Richard Barrett, M. Carpenter, Steven Whitfield, and Cindy Bradley.

Walters found prints on one other of the pieces of tape she was sent. On that piece, she found two fingerprints and a palmprint belonging to Brian McWhite. Steve Leary also used Luminol in the house, a spray that detects trace amounts of blood even if the blood has been cleaned up or is invisible to the eye. If blood is present, it shows aluminescent light blue color. Other things cause luminescence such as rust or metal or vegetable materials.

Luminol revealed blood in the Jones’ house where it could not be seen. Luminol detected blood on a wash cloth found in the shower in the master bathroom. Leary also found a pattern of stains on the foyer floor and carpet. A repetitive pattern like the heel-mark of a shoe was repeated ten or fifteen times going down the hallway.

In the den, where the body was found, there was a crowbar-shaped pattern, about twenty-seven inches long with a curve on one end, which was about five inches wide. A similar but smaller pattern was found in the foyer. It was fifteen inches long and was repeated twice as if laid down, picked up, and laid down again. There was a positive reaction on the driver’sseat and the back of the passenger seat in the teal Buick parked in the garage. Luminol testing of Donald's van came back negative. Leary said it was harder to clean blood out of a carpet or fabric than off tile or linoleum.

On cross-examination, Leary said all the pieces of duct tape found in the Jones house were from the same roll, including the rolled-up ball found inside the cinder block in the garage. The heel-shaped mark could have been caused by something else.

Before processing the van on January 26, 1996, Lieutenant Redmond told him the van had been detailed at least five times since December of 1995. Leary described Luminol as a"very useful tool."He had done it "many, many times." Waugh asked him to do the Luminol testing.

 
 


Linda Jones

 

Linda Jones
(Florida Department of Corrections)

 

Linda Jones
(Florida Department of Corrections)

 

 

 
 
 
 
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