Murder suspect was flirting with women at his slain wife’s funeral, witness said
YAKIMA, Wash. — Murder suspect Barry Beckford was flirting with women at his wife’s funeral, according to a longtime friend who testified at his trial on Wednesday.
Beckford, 62, is accused of killing his wife Deborah Bailey over 20 years ago while living in Selah. He is charged with first-degree murder.
The trial’s in its third week and is expected to last for at least another two weeks, the Yakima Herald-Republic report.
James Mabry, the couple’s friend of 10 years at the time, was asked to be a pallbearer at Bailey’s funeral, which he called a great honor.
Mabry said he was upset when he noticed Beckford’s “light” attitude following her shooting death.
His testimony was cut short Wednesday but is scheduled to continue Thursday.
Earlier that day, Beckford’s best friend Timmy McKimmy and Crystal Massett, his girlfriend at the time, were cross-examined before the jury.
Prosecutors with the state theorize McKimmy gave Beckford a ride home after his wife was shot to death and left in her car on Feb. 15, 1997 on the Naches-Wenas Grade.
The state pointed out inconsistencies in four statements McKimmy gave in 1997. It also said he may have taken muscle relaxers before a polygraph test for one of the statements.
The defense and prosecution both focused on the hours after Bailey’s murder.
McKimmy’s ex-girlfriend said he was gone when she came home on the day of the murder. She also said she was asleep the night of Feb.15, but remembers McKimmy coming home around midnight to grab something from the closet, then leave again.
She said McKimmy also urged her to sell one of several guns she owned after Bailey’s murder. He told her it would be fine because the murder weapon had already been found. He also expressed concern that Bailey might have been killed by her own gun.
McKimmy has never been charged in the case.