Kelley indicted in hatchet murder

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Prosecution waiting on evidence for trial

By Kenny Colston

A Pewee Valley woman charged with killing her boyfriend with a hatchet has been indicted by a grand jury and will proceed to a jury trial.

Gail Kelley, 51, was arrested for murder on July 6, after police received a report of a possible murder.  At the time, Kelley told police she struck Michael T. Evans, 44, in the head with a hatchet, which was found wrapped in a bloody towel in a trash can in the driveway.

Kelley appeared in Oldham Circuit Court on Thursday for an arraignment post-indictment.

Kelley has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, as well as charges of tampering with evidence and being a persistent felony offender.

Mike Head, a detective with Oldham County Police, said during a previous court appearance that officers had been called to Evans’ home for domestic issues several times. Reports were filed three times listing Evans as the aggressor, he said.

On the day of the murder, Kelley admitted to hitting Evans in the head with the hatchet while he was playing computer games, the detective said.

According to police reports, Kelley said before the incident Evans had made disparaging comments about her deceased daughter and had grabbed Kelley by the head and tried to force her to make him food.

Investigators determined Evans had been struck several times with the hatchet, Head said, adding Kelley was taken to the hospital to be examined. He said no defensive wounds were found on Kelley.

Kelley reportedly told police she took a shower, washed clothes, cleaned up blood, and disposed of the hatchet in a trash can outside of the house, all of which led to the tampering charge.

At Thursday’s arraignment, Commonwealth Attorney Courtney Baxter said her prosecution team is waiting for a “tremendous amount” of lab results, including DNA evidence, to be processed before proceeding to trial.

Kelley will be back in court Dec. 5 at 9 a.m. for a pre-trial conference, where both Baxter and Kelley’s defense team hope to present some evidence, they said.