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George Junior PORTER

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Abuser
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: December 26, 1988
Date of birth: December 8, 1956
Victim profile: Teresa L. Jones, 29 (his former girlfriend)
Method of murder: Beating
Location: Lewis County, Idaho, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on September 7, 1990
 
 
 
 
 

In the Supreme Court of the State of Idaho

 
opinion 26645 opinion 28361 opinion 29559
 
 
 
 
 
 

Idaho: Judge denies retrial for Idaho death row inmate

Associated Press

February 13, 2008

A state judge has denied a new trial motion filed by an Idaho death row inmate convicted in the beating death of a former girlfriend 20 years ago.

Inmate George Junior Porter, 52, sought a new trial based on DNA tests of evidence, including fingernail scrapings from Jones and hair and blood samples.

Jones was convicted in the 1988 slaying of Theresa L. Jones. The body of the 29-year-old Kamiah woman was found in her bed covered in a sleeping bag. Evidence suggested she was beaten severely.

Second District Judge John Bradbury concluded that the new evidence was inconclusive and unlikely to provoke a jury to reach a different verdict in the case.

  


 

Facts

George Porter was convicted of first degree murder for the death of his former girlfriend Teresa Jones. Responding to a report that Jones had not been seen for several days, police found Jonesí body in the bedroom of her residence, naked and covered with a sleeping bag, on December 26, 1988.

One of the officers testified that Jones had been severely beaten in the face, head, and lower body. Officers also testified that they found several clumps of human hair near the body which were of the same length and color as that of the victim. The pathologist who performed Jonesí autopsy later testified that there were between three and six areas on Jonesí scalp where the hair appeared to have been pulled out in large clumps.

Approximately eleven days before Porterís trial, the State disclosed that it intended to call several of Porterís former girlfriends to testify that Porter had, while beating them, also pulled out clumps of their hair.

The State presented testimony of Lewis County Sheriff Don Fortney and Deputy Sheriff Randal Wadley, as well as an investigator for the Idaho Attorney Generalís Office, as an offer of proof regarding whether, in their experience with domestic violence crimes, they had found the act of pulling out clumps of hair unusual. After hearing this testimony, the district court, although declining to rule on its admissibility, informed Porterís counsel that he should be prepared to meet the evidence regarding Porterís prior misconduct.

During trial and over objection from Porterís counsel, the State introduced evidence that Porter had previously battered several of his girlfriends and, in the course of those beatings, pulled out clumps of their hair. The district court concluded that the evidence of Porterís hair pulling was admissible as demonstrating a particular signature or modus operandi. On January 26, 1990, the jury found Porter guilty.

 

 

 
 
 
 
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