Erik Beauchamp Found Guilty of 2nd Degree Murder
Four days of emotional witness testimony ended with a verdict Wednesday.
Erik Beauchamp — guilty of second-degree murder.
For those who knew Lindsey Morgan — it isn’t enough.
Amanda Brooks, Lindsey’s friend says, “I do believe that second degree does not do justice that he needed. I do believe that first degree should have been honored but I’m not the juror.”
In closing arguments — the defense asked the jury to no longer consider voluntary manslaughter as an option
Defense attorney Bill Barnett says the verdict of second-degree murder was just.
“We truly believe the charge should have been dropped and it was. We feel that a fair jury verdict had occurred and that this is appropriate.”
The prosecution told jurors that the evidence, including Beauchamp’s own testimony — pointed to murder in the first-degree.
Tony Badovinic, Wexford County Prosecutor says, “murder one is pre-meditated. It’s thought out. It’s planned and it’s deliberate. It’s intentional. Murder two is murder one without pre-meditation and deliberation.”
A verdict that left Beauchamp in tears in the courtroom.
“We are very pleased with the decision,” says Barnett. “Erik’s very sorry for what’s happened and we just want to thank the jury for their work and their decision today.”
The victim’s friend says now all that’s left for Lindsey Morgan’s family and children is to move forward.
“Now we have to work on all of her children, getting them all under the same roof,” says Brooks. “We have to worry about her kids and living on the legacy that Lindsey had and making our boys know that Lindsey did deserve justice and she did not get it.”
The sentencing date for Beauchamp is yet to be decided.
He could still be sent to prison for life.
The case has been presented and the jury has deliberated. Erik Beauchamp has been found guilty of 2nd degree murder.
Closing arguments wrapped up around 1:00 p.m. — and the jury started its deliberations.
This is a case Northern Michigan’s News Leader has been following since it broke last August. That’s when Erik Beauchamp shot and killed Lindsey Morgan outside of a home in Buckley.
During the trial, both the prosecution and defense agreed Beauchamp pulled the trigger.
But while the prosecution was asking for a first degree, pre-meditated murder conviction — the defense was originally requesting one of voluntary manslaughter — until today.
Cody Boyer was live outside of the Wexford County courthouse where anticipation on a verdict was growing.
Wednesday, in closing arguments, defense attorney Bill Barnett asked jurors to consider another conviction — second degree murder.
The prosecutor says the difference between the two charges is the amount of pre-meditation leading up to murder. By law, first degree murder carries a mandatory life sentence. Second degree could see less time in prison.
The jury went back into the courtroom a few times asking to review some evidence — including testimony from Beauchamp’s sister, and texts between he and Morgan just before the killing. Just before 5:00 p.m. the jury came back with a guilty verdict.