Monday, investigators announced they believe missing Nelson County teenager, Alexis Murphy, has been murdered. Now, suspect Randy Taylor – first scheduled to stand trial next month must wait until May – as the state continues to build its murder case.
Investigators have made no mention of a body being found and haven't released any new evidence in the case. Murphy's family says they are accepting the news investigators believe Taylor killed the teenager.
"We ask for continued prayer and support right now because we need that more than anything," said Alexis' aunt Trina Murphy.
A new indictment a grand jury just handed down says Taylor "willfully, deliberately and with premeditation killed and murdered Alexis Murphy in the first degree."
"Of course my family is devastated. I can't stand here and say that we're not. We're going to stand on our faith in God and push through the next five months and have our day in court," Murphy added.
At Claudia's Florist - in the city of Lovingston - employees have tried to keep hope alive.
"He is being charged with the murder of her so that will automatically make you think that she's gone," said worker Lisa Puchalski.
With no new leads and Monday's announcement that prosecutors believe Murphy was murdered, Puchalski can't help but fear the worst.
"That's my personal feeling that she is not here because if she was and is physically able to get out of whatever she is in, I think she would have been out," she said.
Commonwealth Attorney Anthony Martin briefed reporters of the new charges as Murphy's family stood behind.
"A special grand jury was impaneled at my request to hear evidence and to consider indictments that I prepared," Martin said.
Now the community is hoping Monday's news will lead to more answers.
"I would like for him to tell the family where she is…If it's her body, then let them have her body so she can be at peace," Puchalski said.
"What he took from us was not something tangible, nothing that he can give back," Murphy said.
Monday, the judge dropped Taylor's initial abduction charge as the state plans to move forward with a new "abduction with intent to defile charge" – in addition to those 2 murder charges. Taylor's first day of trial is scheduled for May 1st.
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