CHENANGO COUNTY – A couple has been indicted on murder charges in the death of a 58-year-old disabled veteran after a Chenango County grand jury met to hand up indictments last week.
Jeremy P. Coates, 46, of Norwich, and Melissa K. Crispell, 42, of Oxford, were each indicted on multiple murder, robbery and assault charges in connection with the death of David Green at a residence on Charles Kelley Road, in the Town of Oxford, on Sept. 23.
According to the indictments, it is alleged that the couple did — intentionally and while in the commission of the crime of robbery in the first degree — cause the death of David Green by using a piece of slate, a dangerous instrument, to hit him in the head. This action caused blunt force trauma which resulted in Green's death.
During the course of the commission of the robbery, it is further alleged that the couple did steal various hand guns and long guns belonging to Green.
Coates faces six separate charges, including one count of murder in the first degree, a class A-1 violent felony.
According to Chenango County District Attorney Joseph McBride, Coates is being charged with subsection seven of that law, which states: 'a person is guilty of murder in the first degree when the victim was killed while the defendant was in the course of committing or attempting to commit and in furtherance of robbery, burglary in the first degree or second degree, kidnapping in the first degree, arson in the first degree or second degree, rape in the first degree, criminal sexual act in the first degree, sexual abuse in the first degree, aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree or escape in the first degree, or in the course of and furtherance of immediate flight after committing or attempting to commit any such crime or in the course of and furtherance of immediate flight after attempting to commit the crime of murder in the second degree; provided however, the victim is not a participant in one of the aforementioned crimes and, provided further that, unless the defendant's criminal liability under this subparagraph is based upon the defendant having commanded another person to cause the death of the victim or intended victim pursuant to section 20.00 of this chapter, this subparagraph shall not apply where the defendant's criminal liability is based upon the conduct of another pursuant to section 20.00 of this chapter.'
In addition to the top count, Coates faces five other charges, including two counts of murder in the second degree, also a class A-1 violent felony; one count of robbery in the first degree, a class B violent felony; and two counts of assault in the first degree, also classified as class B violent felonies.
Coates' co-defendant Crispell faces the same five charges as Coates, without the murder in the first degree charge.
The pair will now have to be re-arraigned in Chenango County Court before motions for a trial can be started.