Murder suspect expected to plead guilty Thursday

Fred Pace

November 8, 2013

MADISON – A Lincoln County woman accused in the shooting death of a Peytona man is scheduled to be in court Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013, at 11 a.m., according to the Boone County Circuit Court docket.

Maura Perry is expected to plead guilty. She is charged with first-degree murder and was indicted in April 2013 by a Boone County grand jury.

Perry, 20, of Hamlin, is accused in the shooting death of Jimmie Cooper, 71, whose body was discovered Sept. 26, 2012, after his co-workers reported that he had not shown up for work.

At the time of the death, Boone County Sheriff’s deputies reported the decomposing body of Cooper was found inside his trailer home in Peytona. The man had been missing for about a week, police said.

Cooper was first discovered when co-workers were concerned because they had not seen him for several days and failed to report to his job. When checking on Cooper, someone found the door to his residence partially open and notified the Boone County Sheriff’s Office, who checked the home and discovered his body.

The home did show signs of a forced entry and Cooper’s car was missing. The vehicle was recovered in Putnam County, investigators said.

In magistrate court, during a preliminary hearing, a deputy testified that Perry had confessed to the crime, saying she shot Cooper with his own .38-caliber gun as he lay in his bed at his home in Peytona. The deputy said Perry said she had been planning to poison Cooper, but she was not able to get the drugs.

Investigators believe that Cooper was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head as he lay in his bed at home.

Investigators also said that Perry had an ongoing relationship with the victim and stole property after the alleged murder, which she pawned to facilitate her alleged drug usage.

Deputies recovered Cooper’s car at a park and ride at Scott Depot, in Putnam County, where it had been abandoned. Several items have been recovered from pawn shops in the Kanawha Valley area that belonged to Cooper.