Friends, family remember Jubie

19-year-old suspect enters innocent plea in stabbing death of east Everett woman

By SCOTT NORTH

Herald Writer

An Everett man pleaded innocent to aggravated first-degree murder Friday in the brutal home-invasion killing of a woman who lived in his neighborhood.

Brandon Kenneth White, 19, entered the plea during a brief hearing in Snohomish County Superior Court. He is charged with Monday’s killing of Gail Jubie, 37, who was repeatedly stabbed and shot during an apparent robbery at her home on Sunnyside Boulevard SE in east Everett.

Later Friday, friends and family gathered on the woman’s front lawn for a candlelight vigil to mourn her death.

White was arrested allegedly wearing blood-spattered shoes after police followed a trail of footprints on the frost-covered ground from Jubie’s home to his parents’ house, a short distance from the killing scene, according to court papers.

If convicted, White could face the death penalty, although prosecutors made clear Friday that they are months away from deciding whether to seek the young man’s execution.

The defendant participated in Friday’s hearing via a video link to the county jail, where he is being held in lieu of $750,000 bail.

White answered all of Judge Richard Thorpe’s questions in a clear voice, but it was impossible to judge his demeanor. One of White’s public defenders turned the jail’s video camera away from him during the public hearing. The same thing happened at White’s first bail hearing, which was also public.

Deputy prosecutor Craig Matheson told Thorpe he wants a hearing early next week so prosecutors can seek a court order compelling White to provide blood and hair samples for testing.

Jubie fought her attacker, and was clutching strands of hair when she was found, mortally wounded, on the porch of her home.

Neighbors called police. One reported seeing Jubie struggling with a young man on her porch and heard what sounded like a gunshot. Another heard screams and a gunshot and later saw a young man dressed in a suit running from the scene.

As the killing unfolded, both witnesses called the Jubie home to check on the woman. They spoke with a young man who said she couldn’t come to the phone, according to court papers.

An autopsy found Jubie was shot once in the head and stabbed approximately 17 times, documents show.

After his arrest, White allegedly admitted planning to rob Jubie with a friend. He claimed it was his friend who killed the woman while White was attempting to take her television, according to court papers.

Prosecutors say they’ve found no evidence to show that anyone other than White was involved in Jubie’s death.

In court documents, Matheson made clear how little stock investigators place in White’s alleged version of what occurred, enclosing the word "friend" in quotes whenever recounting what the defendant reportedly said about who really took Jubie’s life.

With agreement from lawyers on both sides of the case, Thorpe scheduled White’s trial for May 18. He also set a March 30 deadline for prosecutors to announce whether they will seek a death sentence.

Prosecuting Attorney Jim Krider’s policy is to delay making a decision on whether to seek capital punishment until after the defense is given an opportunity to present information that may tend to convince a jury not to vote for the death penalty.

Public defender Mark Stephens told Thorpe Friday the defense intends to present mitigating information.

White has no known felony convictions, although he has had scrapes with the law for misdemeanor marijuana possession and theft, records show.

Jubie was the youngest of 12 children and lived in the family home where she had grown up. She spent the last few years caring for and being a companion to her mother and father. She’d only recently begun living alone following the death of her father.

More than 100 people showed up to the vigil Friday night. They stood silently, listening to Jubie’s favorite song, "Candle in the Wind" by Elton John. The song was written for Princess Diana, whose life was also cut short at the age of 36, one year younger than Jubie.

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