Tuesday was day two in the trial of a Cherokee County man who stands accused of brutally killing his mother in 2017.
Larry Wayne Bodily of Centre was arrested on February 19th of that year and charged with murder in the death of 68 year old Karen Willmon.
Tuesday’s proceedings included testimony from the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Josh Summerford. District Attorney Mike O’Dell questioned Summerford about the beginning of the case, and the chain of events leading up to the arrest of Bodily on February 14th on drug and fraudulent use of a credit/debit card charges, and eventually his arrest on February 19th for murder following the discovery of Willmon’s body.
It was revealed that her body was found inside the garage of the home she shared with her son.
Summerford along with Investigators Tony Monroy, Jeremy Steppes and Leigha Blake went to the home to execute a search warrant – with Investigator Blake finding what appeared to be a suspicious object, situated between a mound of scrap wood and the wall of the garage. After moving the wood, it was determined that the body of Karen Willmon was rolled up in the plastic. Investigators Shawn Rogers and Deputy Coroner Paul McDonald along with Mark Hopwood with the JSU Center for Applied Forensics also responded to the scene.
According to Chief Deputy Summerford’s testimony, it appeared that Willmon had suffered two gunshot wounds to her back and severe trauma to the top of the head.
Investigator Tony Monroy was next to take the stand.
After tracking Bodily to Birmingham that day, Cherokee County Investigators followed him, and a passenger, back toward Gadsden – at which point they worked with law enforcement there to place him under arrest on a theft of property charge. That charge was in connection with pawns that had been made of Mrs. Willmon’s property, by her son, including a guitar, amplifier and a pull-behind trailer.
Cherokee County officials met Gadsden authorities at the Cherokee/Etowah county line and arrested Bodily for murder.
Testimony resumes at 1:00pm Tuesday in the courtroom of Judge Andrew Hairston.