BOONE COUNTY, KY (FOX19) - The jury found David Dooley guilty of murder and tampering with evidence for killing Michelle Mockbee at Thermo Fisher Scientific in Florence in 2012.
The jury began deliberations on Tuesday at 4:45 p.m. and went until 8 p.m. They continued at 9 a.m. Wednesday and reached a verdict around 1 p.m.
The jury recommended Dooley be sentenced to 38 years for murder and 5 years for tampering with evidence for a total of 43 years.
After the judge read the verdict, Dooley hung his head, closed his eyes and shook his head.
Mockbee’s husband Dan, breathed a sigh of relief.
“Its been a long, long, long time. It’s great to finally have this over so we can move on. I mean, it’s been a long, long road," he said.
Dooley, a contracted cleaning man, was convicted of murder in her death in 2014, but the ruling was tossed with the discovery of new evidence.
The new evidence led to another guilty verdict.
Prosecutors said Dooley beat Mockbee to death at the warehouse where they worked after she found out that he doctored time cards by clocking in his wife when she wasn’t there to do the cleaning work.
Though no murder weapon has ever been found, medical examiner Doctor Gregory Wanger believes an industrial type tape gun was used as a murder weapon.
Wanger said Mockbee died of blunt force trauma to the head and had multiple cuts on her body.
A DNA expert testified that Dooley’s DNA was likely on the plastic trash bag put on Mockbee’s head, but it was not conclusive.
The defense rested on Tuesday without calling Dooley to testify.
Dooley’s defense team worked to prove that someone other than Dooley had an opportunity to kill Mockbee at Thermo Fisher Scientific after a video of an unknown man walking around the warehouse less than 12 hours before Mockbee was murdered surfaced.
“Michelle Mockbee deserves to have the right killer prosecuted and it’s not David Dooley," Attorney Deanna Dennison said.
“Did you hear the evidence about the force that would be necessary in order to cause these injuries? It would be a rage so great to have bludgeoned this woman to death and they want you to believe it’s over a time card. It’s over cheating on time in an $11 an hour job."
Dooley and his wife Janet had a contract to provide cleaning services at Thermo Fisher Scientific in Florence.
Monday’s testimony once again focused the tape gun that is believed to be weapon used to kill Mockbee. The defense relied on the testimony of a biomechanical engineer who said a tape gun also used to bind Mockbee’s hands behind her back was not sturdy enough to cause four fractures to her skull.
That directly contradicted the findings of the medical examiner at the time of Mockbee’s death.
The prosecution asked Dr. Greg Wanger what he thought the murder weapon was.
“I think it’s the tape gun,” he said.
A replica tape gun was shown in court, the actual one was never found. So where did it go?
According to the prosecution, of the nine people who were in the warehouse the morning Mockbee was killed, only Dooley was seen leaving the property for about 30 minutes before returning to work.
Prosecutors believe Dooley drove it off the property along with other evidence when he killed Mockbee.
Dooley claimed he went home to check on his wife Janet and change his clothes because his jeans had a hole in them.
“Justice demands a fair trial process,” Attorney General Andy Beshear said. “Through this retrial, Mr. Dooley received a fair trial and was convicted. Justice has now been served.”
Dooley will be eligible for parole after 13 years since he’s been held without bond for seven.