Minidoka County man arrested in connection to wife’s 2014 murder

Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 1:48 PM MST|Updated: Mar. 8, 2021 at 11:03 AM MST
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BURLEY, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Law enforcement arrested Minidoka County resident Jimmy Lee Murphy Wednesday in connection to the 2014 death of his wife Whitney Murphy.

A statement from the Cassia County Sheriff’s Office said Jim Murphy, 32, faces a homicide charge and is suspected of killing his then 26-year-old wife at her home in Raft River on Oct. 24, 2014.

Murphy’s first appearance in court on the first-degree murder charge was Thursday afternoon. His bond was set at $2 million.

According to court documents, elements of Jim Murphy’s account to law enforcement of the day his wife was shot and killed changed.

Investigators surmise the home was staged to look like it had been robbed and Whitney Murphy was allegedly killed by the robber who then fled in a car. Whitney died of a shotgun wound to the head.

Jim Murphy owned a shotgun and it was reportedly the only thing missing from the home after the incident.

On Oct. 26, 2014, investigators swabbed Jim Murphy’s hands and found gunshot residue, indicating he’d been around a weapon that was fired.

During the incident, a neighbor was shot and injured.

In January, the FBI also interviewed Murphy. He was later placed under surveillance and after he quit his job in late-February and appeared to be loading a van to leave, law enforcement made the decision top arrest him.

Court documents said when Cassia County deputies tried to arrest Murphy, he fled. Deputies tackled Murphy and used a Taser to subdue him in the doorway of a mobile home.

In Thursday’s news release, the Cassia County Sheriff’s Office thanked the FBI, Minidoka County Sheriff’s Office and the public for their assistance in helping in the investigation.

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