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Jury delivers guilty verdict in Oldson trial
After nearly two weeks of testimony and seven hours of deliberation, the jury in the cold case murder trial against John Oldson reached a decision. Guilty of second degree murder.
Oldson sat quietly as the verdict was read. He was charged in the death of 31 year old Catherine Beard.
The case went cold for over two decades. Cathy was last seen at a tavern in Ord on May 31, 1989.
Her family was in the courtroom Friday as the verdict was read.
"Today we've had 12 members of a jury give a verdict of 2nd degree murder, which will help us greatly to put closure to this entire year's long journey," said Cathy's brother Bill Beard.
"It's not about us it's not about me, it's about Cathy and that's what we're all here for and it's justice for Cathy and it gives everybody closure," said
The jury consisting of eight women and four men came to a verdict around 2:00 Friday afternoon. Oldson was found guilty of second degree murder in the death of Catherine Beard.
The closing arguments were read Thursday.
Oldson's defense said that there was no hard evidence pinning Oldson to Cathy's death. And pointed instead at a other witnesses, and even a diary claiming Cathy was hit by a car.
Oldson also said that he saw Cathy getting into a different truck that night in the alley with two men.
But the prosecution said Oldson was the last person to be seen alive with Cathy. They said it was unreasonable to think Cathy would be abducted by two people in a matter of 30 seconds saying that Oldson went into the alley with Cathy, got upset when she rejected him, took her against her will and killed her.
Oldson sat quietly as the verdict was read. He looked at his mom and family members in the hallway as he was led out of the courthouse.
Oldson will be sentenced April 1st, at 1:00 pm in Howard County.
Second degree murder is a class 1 B felony and holds a sentencing of 20 years to life in prison.
His bond is revoked and he lies in the custody of Valley County.
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