Jury forewoman: Bodden story didn't make sense

The forewoman of the Douglas County jury that convicted Karen Bodden of first-degree murder in the death of her husband said Wednesday the defendant's story didn't make sense.

The panel deliberated less than three hours on Tuesday before returning a guilty verdict against Bodden, 45. She was accused of shooting her 50-year-old husband Robin Bodden to death in his Minden-Tahoe Airport hangar in August 2006 and dumping his body in the desert near Johnson Lane.

Bodden denied the allegation, saying she and her husband were having marital problems, and he left Aug. 16, 2006, in a plane with a man named "Ramos."

"Her story just didn't measure up," said jury forewoman Ané Samsel. "No plane took off from the airport."

Samsel said once the case was given to jurors, "we were instantly talking."

"Every time we would go in there (the jury room) before we got the case, we were not allowed to say anything. We were wondering what was on each other's minds," she said.

Early in the deliberation process, Samsel said the jurors took a vote.

"We took a silent vote. To our surprise, we all came up with a guilty verdict. We said, 'Let's do it again' for first- or second-degree. We all came up with first. This was going to be easier than we thought. We were all on the same page."

She said jurors worked well together.

"Some of the jurors were quiet listeners, others were piping up and talking. It seemed everybody took notes," she said.

She said defense attorney James Wilson Jr. was able to raise questions in the jurors' minds.

"It kept coming back to the fact that her story didn't make sense," Samsel said.

"I really felt the DA (Mark Jackson) had a very good case. Nothing against the defense - I don't feel he had much to work with," Samsel said.

"Her history of lies and deception certainly didn't help her any. It looked like a lot of lying was going on," she said.

Samsel said jurors were relieved the case was over and that they didn't have to sentence Bodden.

She faces up to life in prison without parole.

With a first-degree murder conviction, the defendant has the option of being sentenced by the jury or the presiding judge. Bodden waived her right to be sentenced by the jury. District Judge Dave Gamble will sentence her March 4.

"We were all prepared to go in there and do that today, but we were relieved we didn't have to decide what the sentence was," Samsel said. "All of us are relieved it's over."


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