Man living in woods convicted of murder in shooting deaths of retired NH couple
A man who was living in a tent in the woods in New Hampshire was convicted of murder Monday in the fatal shooting of a retired couple who had gone out for a walk.
After a day and a half of deliberation, a jury found Logan Clegg, 27, guilty of second-degree murder in the deaths of Stephen and Djeswende Reid in April 2022. The couple were killed while walking on a trail near their apartment in the city of Concord.
The bodies of the couple, found several days later, had been dragged into the woods and covered with leaves, sticks and debris, police said.
Clegg, who gave a different name when he was questioned by police, later burned his tent, erased information from his computer and bought a bus ticket out of Concord, prosecutors said. Investigators eventually found and arrested him in South Burlington, Vermont, with a one-way plane ticket to Berlin, Germany, a fake passport, and a gun in his backpack, prosecutors said.
Clegg's lawyers said he left New Hampshire not because of the Reids, but because he had been hiding from police after violating his probation on burglary and theft charges in Utah.
They also said an analysis of shell casings and bullets found in the area could not conclude that his gun fired the shots that killed the Reids.
Clegg was also convicted on charges of falsifying physical evidence and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The trial began Oct. 3.
Prosecutors said Clegg's repeated lies, his attempt to flee, and the gun found in his backpack offered a trail of evidence to show he was guilty. But defense attorneys said authorities charged the wrong person.
"The state has proven to you over the past three weeks now that the defendant, and the defendant only, killed Stephen and Wendy," prosecutor Joshua Speicher said, describing the killing as senseless. "We have proven this beyond a reasonable doubt. We have proven to you how he did it, when he did it, where he did it."
Speicher added, "What we don't know is why. We just don't know."
Defense attorney Mariana Dominguez argued that the state's case was built on speculation and was full of holes.
"Logan Clegg is not guilty," she said. "Police investigated, but instead of looking at the science and at the evidence with clear eyes, they speculated. They assumed. ... They saw only what they wanted to see. They got the wrong guy."
Prosecutors said that shell casings and bullet fragments were later found at the crime scene. Shell casings also were found at a location later discovered to be Clegg's tent site. Prosecutors said bullets fired from Clegg's 9 mm handgun were consistent in caliber and class characteristics as bullet fragments found during the Reids' autopsies.
Cleggs' lawyers said an analysis of shell casings and bullets found in the area could not conclude that his gun fired the shots and that the casing could have come from a variety of guns.
"They have no idea what gun killed the Reids," Dominguez told the jury during her closing arguments, adding that police "only had eyes" for Clegg's gun.
Both sides also gave differing accounts of a woman who was walking on the trail with her dogs and allowed the Reids to pass her and walk ahead. She later heard gunshots, then came across a man on the trail before continuing her hike. Defense attorneys argued that the man she saw on the trail was not Clegg because the clothing he had on did not match the prosecution's description.