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A Healdsburg woman described to a Sonoma County jury this afternoon how her brother fatally shot her boyfriend in her home last March. Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch’s first witness, Amanda Miller, said her brother Jarrod Miller showed up at the Healdsburg home she shared with her boyfriend, 29-year-old Timothy Neuer on March 8. Neuer and Jarrod Miller argued earlier that night at the Cloverdale home she and Neuer rented and where her brother was staying rent free.
Amanda Miller testified she was growing marijuana plants at both the Cloverdale and Healdsburg homes. Amanda Miller testified Neuer was angry that her brother was taking advantage of her because he was not trying to find work or another place to live. Her brother had been staying with her and Neuer for at least two months, she said. Miller said when she and Neuer arrived back at their Healdsburg home, Neuer said he wanted her brother to move out of the Cloverdale home immediately.
She said she told him it could wait until the morning. As Neuer was getting his hair cut in the bathroom, her brother showed up and demanded to speak to Neuer, Amanda Miller said. Neuer said he could talk while he got his haircut, but her brother said he wanted Neuer to sit next to him on a sofa in the living room and talk, Amanda Miller said.
When Neuer came out of the bathroom several minutes later he told her brother to get out of his house, she said. Her brother then stood up and shot Neuer three times, she said. She said she tried to stop him by choking him and dragging his arm down but he was too strong. Neuer put his hands out, looked her in the eyes and said, ‘Babe’ as he was shot she said.
Miller said her brother then told her, “It’s going to be okay now Mandy, it’s going to be alright.” He then left the house and she called 911, Neuer died at the scene.Miller was arrested later that night. A California Highway Patrol officer found what is believed to be the murder weapon in a nearby vineyard. In his opening statement, Miller’s attorney Joseph Bisbiglia told the jury Jarrod Miller suffered from a mental illness and was paranoid and stressed out because Neuer was pressing him to leave.
Miller retracted a not guilty by reason of insanity plea before the trial. Bisbiglia said his client bought a firearm in Nevada to protect himself because he was living in houses with marijuana plants. He also stayed for a time with his sister and Neuer in the Healdsburg home.”He was on heightened alert that something could go wrong,” Bisbiglia said.
Neuer was drinking alcohol the night of the murder and became agitated, Bisbiglia said.He said his client did not plan to execute Neuer as Ravitch alleged in her opening statement. He said Neuer “stomped out of the bathroom and said ‘get the f— out of my house’,” Bisbiglia said. “The final incident, the shooting, was the culmination of stress and paranoia. He believed others were out to get him,” Bisbiglia said. The trial resumes Tuesday.
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