Jury Hears Mark Taylor's Take On Murder


Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - Chad Darnall



MCCRACKEN COUNTY, KY- Detective Tim Reed was the lead investigator in the CaSondra Evrard murder. He took to the stand Tuesday afternoon to share the conversations he had with Mark Taylor in the days before and after Evrard's body was found.

Taylor admitted he had initially lied to him, Reed recalled. Taylor explained his actions to the detective by saying he had wanted to ensure he had everyone "contained" that had "ever done anything" to his daughter, Jasmine before he was arrested.

Mark Taylor is charged with murder and kidnapping for his role in the 2010 death of Evrard, who had been friends with his daughter since high school. Taylor's wife, Jamie, who entered a guilty plea in December, testified Monday she and her husband believed Evrard had played a role in the alleged rape of Jasmine.

Reed testified Taylor, "felt like the protector of his family."

It is why Mark Taylor told Detective Reed he had made a list of all those he believed had information or had been involved in the rape. On December 10, 2010, CaSondra Evrard, he told him, was simply another name. But, the questioning at the Taylor home soon turned brutal.

Taylor told the detective his wife Jamie dragged Evrard into their bedroom by the hair. Both, he admitted, were cutting her with a knife.

Former state medical examiner Dr. Deirdre Schluckebier testified Tuesday about the extent of the injuries. She showcased a dozen graphic autopsy photographs of Evrard in which her face, throat, and stomach were slashed. Schluckebier said Evrard had been stabbed and cut multiple times with a knife, deep enough to reveal tissue and muscle. Evrard's head, she said was severely bruised. It, she said, was the result of an intense beating.

Dr. Schluckebier said the injury that killed Evrard was either a deep wound to her chest that punctured her lung or a deep laceration to her throat.

"It severed her trachea and also on the left it cut the carotid artery and it also chipped the bones of, the bones in her neck, one of the vertebrae in her neck," she said of the force used to deliver that cut across her neck.

Detective Reed testified Mark Taylor remembered CaSondra's pleas for mercy that afternoon.

"Things like, 'You know I wouldn't do that. I love her. I wouldn't let anything happen to her,' referring to Jasmine," Reed testified of what Mark Taylor had remembered.

But the beating, Taylor said, continued and soon Evrard was dead. Reed told the jury Taylor said he choked up at the sight of her dead body. Mark Taylor told him he had heard her making gurgling noises and noticed slight movement. Taylor, who also told the veteran detective he considered CaSondra Evrard to be a part of his family, 'one of his own', picked her up in her final moments.

"The way he referred to CaSondra's body he said he handled it with the utmost love and respect and treated her like he would a sick child."

But, the state argued, there was absolutely no love or respect shown that afternoon.

"He had been asked why he didn't call 911 and he referenced raising hogs. He said he knew when something was dead and something wasn't dead," Reed continued.

Once Evrard died, Mark Taylor told Reed, he was the one to dispose of her body. He told the detective he wrapped her body in a blanket and then a tarp to "keep the weather off her" before leaving her body at a dump site.

Before he disposed of the body however, he said he and his wife had a conversation. Jamie, he told the detective, said, "She'll never mess with anyone again." Taylor, admitted he agreed, saying he was 'thankful' Evrard was dead.

Reed's testimony wrapped up the state's case. The defense will present their case beginning at 9 Wednesday morning in McCracken Circuit Court.