Almost immediately after Shane Turner arrived at his West Valley trailer home the afternoon of Jan. 22, 1988, he feared "something terrible had taken place."
There was no sign of the young man's mother or of his sister. Upon searching the home, 2801 S. 2540 West, Turner's fears became reality: He noticed a foot protruding from the hallway closet. He opened the door and found his mother lying inside unconscious."I knelt down, picked her up in my arms and saw she had been severely beaten," Turner testified Wednesday in the first day of a preliminary hearing for Steven Ray Stout, 32, charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of Bonnie Craft, 41, and her daughter, Maureen Turner, 18.
"I laid Mom down, kissed her on the head and then felt her pulse - there was nothing," Shane Turner testified.
Moments later, Jim Craft found the brutalized body of Maureen Turner under her bed.
Prosecutors hope to show 3rd Circuit Judge Eleanor Van Sciver that there is enough probable cause to believe Stout killed Bonnie Craft and Maureen Turner, who were beaten, stabbed and strangled. If the judge agrees, Stout will be ordered to stand trial in 3rd District Court, where prosecutors would seek the death penalty.
Stout, who divorced Jim Craft's stepdaughter, Sharon, in December 1987, was arrested in Mississippi on Dec. 7, nine days after being placed on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted list and after he was featured on the nationally broadcasted program "America's Most Wanted." His girlfriend viewed the program and called police.
Stout is accused of murdering the two women, then stealing Bonnie Craft's car. Police allege Stout later stole Jim Craft's car from his Salt Lake auto shop. That car was recovered near the home of Stout's father in West Virginia.
It is believed Stout fled to the hills of West Virginia, eluding police until his arrest in Mississippi.