Day two: Murder trial for Kathleen Jourdan

Day two of the Kathleen Jourdan continued Friday.
Published: Mar. 4, 2022 at 3:22 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - Friday is day two of the Kathleen Jourdan murder trial on Friday in Dawson County District Court in Lexington.

The 33-year-old claims she acted in self-defense when she shot and killed her husband in front of their two children on I-80 near Cozad on June 17, 2020. Four law enforcement officers, including Cozad Police Department Police Officer John Peden, took the stand Friday.

Officer Peden testified he located and retrieved the Glock .45 handgun from the center of the console. Peden’s 30-minute body cam footage was also taken into evidence. In the video footage it could be heard him yelling at Jourdan to “put your hands up.” Peden, a 16-year law enforcement veteran, also testified he saw multiple firearms in the maroon Ford F-350 truck.

He also testified he was advised by another law enforcement officer to separate Jourdan from her two kids, aged 7-years old and 4-years old at the time, considering they were witnesses to the shooting. Officer Peden testified that Jourdan told him “I’m sorry. I wanted out. I’m sorry. I’m not a bad person” while she was in the back seat of his patrol unit.

Officer Peden said he went to Burger King to get food for the kids and watched cartoons with them at the police station. During questioning from the defense, Peden said he saw a bullet in the chamber and additional bullets in the magazine.

NSP Traffic Services James Roberts testified. Roberts said he arrived on scene for a report of a domestic disturbance in a vehicle. Roberts said he observed Joshua slumped over and unresponsive when he approached the passenger side of the truck. Roberts said he asked Joshua to show his hands but there was no response. He also tried to find a pulse, but did not find one.

NSP Sergeant Eric Hesser specializes in death and narcotics investigation. Sergeant Hesser testified he removed Joshua’s body from the vehicle. He accompanied the body to Gibbon where an autopsy and COVID-19 test were performed.

Also taking the stand was forensic pathologist Dr. Matthias Okoye who conducted Joshua’s autopsy. Dr. Okoye told jurors over he has performed around 15,000 autopsies over the last 40 years. He said 3,000 of those autopsies involved gun shot wounds, 20 percent of which involved multiple gun shot wounds.

During his 90-minute testimony, he said Joshua died from two deeply penetrated gun shot wounds to the chest. Both bullets were recovered at the time of the autopsy. Dr. Okoye noted based on his expertise, the first bullet injured Jourdan’s lung, diaphragm, liver and small intestine, which caused bruising to the spleen and stomach.

He also testified that based on his expertise, the second bullet was the fatal one. He said it entered the chest and went between the ribs, through the right lung and across the aorta.

NSP Investigator Michael Dowling was called back to the stand after testifying on Thursday. He interviewed Kathleen at the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office after the shooting. His interrogation tape was also entered as evidence.

In the tape, you could hear Kathleen tell Dowling that she had reached a “breaking point” in her marriage. She also disclosed she had “curious thoughts” about committing the “perfect murder,” but noted there was no such thing because she would get caught.

Kathleen Jourdan Day 2

Kathleen said the abuse started after she miscarried their first child in 2013.

Dowling said Kathleen revealed Joshua had abused her in several ways, including physical abuse, verbal abuse and sexual abuse. Kathleen said Joshua would pressure her to have sexual intercourse with him. If she would refuse, Joshua would accuse her of cheating or being a “whore.”

When Dowling asked about the shooting, Kathleen said Joshua gave her the same “look” when he strangled her in Granada in 2015, while they were parked on the shoulder of I-80. She also disclosed Joshua always had the .45 caliber handgun ready in the console in case he ever felt he had to use it.

One of the last things Dowling asked Kathleen was how she felt now that Joshua was dead. Kathleen responded, “as horrible as it sounds, I’m relieved he’s out of my life. He is no longer a threat to me or my kids.”

This is a developing story. News 2 is in the courtroom for its entirety as will bring you details as they unfold.

Copyright 2022 KNOP. All rights reserved.