By Scott North
They remembered Gail Jubie Friday.
In a packed Snohomish County courtroom, they talked about a kind and caring woman who loved her family and good coffee and music by Elton John.
They spoke of an awful morning a year ago this week, when the 37-year-old Everett-area woman answered a knock at her door and a killer stepped across the threshold.
Brandon Kenneth White, 20, in November was convicted of aggravated first-degree murder after jurors ruled he repeatedly stabbed and shot Jubie during a botched robbery at her home.
Judge Linda Krese on Friday imposed a mandatory sentence of life in prison without possibility of release. She called the Dec. 11, 2000, killing a "totally senseless" crime and spoke about how grief sometimes rolls through a community like ripples on a pond.
Jubie’s family and friends left no doubt that the slain woman was loved and is deeply missed. She was the youngest of 12 children and had worked as a supermarket checker in Lake Stevens. The courtroom was packed with her siblings and extended family as well as former co-workers.
Gail Jubie never married or moved out of the home her father built with her brothers along Sunnyside Boulevard between Everett and Marysville, Krese was told. She spent the last years of her life caring for her aging parents and was preparing to leave to live on her own after her father’s death about a month before her murder.
Her brother, Alfred Jubie, said his sister was the center of the family circle, the person whom everybody called to keep in touch with the others. Her death has left a void.
"A part of me has been destroyed as was a part of each member of our family," he said.
Larry Jubie said he still expects to look out the window of his home and see his sister’s Mustang pulling up in front of his house. Instead, he finds himself drawn to the cemetery to visit her grave.
Gail Jubie loved coffee and collected mugs with the names of great cities from around the world. Larry Jubie said he looks daily at a mug from London that he’d grabbed for his little sister, but never got the chance to give her — a piece of business left unfinished because of a murder.
Kathleen Jubie, the slain woman’s sister-in-law, said Gail Jubie was her best friend growing up, and somebody she loved and admired as an adult.
She recalled teaching her old friend how to drive about a decade ago, spending hours circling a school parking lot in Lake Stevens. Other relatives spoke of the care she provided her parents and the joy she took in her siblings’ children.
She was a careful, methodical woman," a late bloomer that was finally ready to bloom" when her life was cut short, Kathleen Jubie said.
The murder was discovered when Gail Jubie raced out of her home, screaming for help. Her cries alerted neighbors, who spotted a young man in a suit running away from the scene.
White was linked to the killing after police followed a single trail of bloody footprints from the Jubie home to White’s parents’ house nearby. A search turned up a blood-soaked business suit that had been worn by the killer. Jubie’s blood was also spattered on his shoes, his socks and one of his ears.
White early on admitted involvement in the killing, but only after telling a series of conflicting stories that minimized his involvement. He ultimately claimed another person was involved and was chiefly responsible for shooting Jubie and stabbing her 31 times.
He stuck to that claim Friday, tearfully telling the judge that another man was the true killer.
The statements did little but anger his victim’s family, some of whom took comfort in seeing him brought to justice.
Annette Jubie reminded White that her sister’s decision to fight during the attack all but guaranteed his eventual capture.
"She did win," she said. "Because of that scream you are here today. And you will never know freedom again. In death, she made sure this day would happen."
You can call Herald Writer Scott North at 425-339-3431
or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.