RED LODGE, Mont. — A Montana jury has found a 40-year-old man guilty of the 2016 shooting deaths of his wife, her sister and his brother-in-law.
After less than two hours of deliberation and six days of testimony, the jury on Monday convicted Robert James LeCou of three counts of deliberate homicide.
LeCou did not testify during the trial, the Billings Gazette reported (http://bit.ly/2rUtGUl).
The shooting in the small agricultural community of Belfrey near the Wyoming border took the lives of Lecou’s wife, 54-year-old Karen Hill-LeCou; his 72-year-old sister-in-law, Sharon Hill-Lamb; and her 76-year-old husband, Lloyd Lamb.
LeCou was arrested in Washington state several days after the killings.
Prosecutors worked to show jurors that even though a weapon hasn’t been recovered, the sum of circumstances pointed to LeCou.
They presented evidence that a handgun belonging to Lamb was missing. And while LeCou denied knowing the caliber, he was seen with his wife while she purchased the type of ammunition that fit the gun.
LeCou’s attorneys suggested that his absence during the killings was an unfair liability.
“And because he wasn’t there, that’s exactly the reason that he became the suspect,” attorney Clark Mathews said during closing arguments.
LeCou was paroled from a Texas prison in 2009 after serving a 10-year sentence for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He and others were charged in the 1999 baseball bat beating death of a homeless man.
Information from: The Billings Gazette, http://www.billingsgazette.com