Belinda Temple Murder

The Belinda Temple murder is a tragic story.  The thirty year old school teacher and mother of a three year old boy was eight months pregnant with a baby girl when she was shot in the back of head with a shotgun in 1999 in her own home.  The crime scene appeared to be a burglary at first, but through further investigation that was doubted by law enforcement.  Belinda's husband was arrested and tried for the crime years later.

Investigators had looked into another suspect who was a neighbor of the couple.  He had a conflict with Belinda due to the fact that she had discussed his chronic truancy with his parents.  He was into shotguns, but there was no evidence that he committed the crime, although he did fail lie detector tests.   

David Temple was arrested in 2004. This former football star and high school coach was charged with the murder of his wife.  His murder trial proceeded on the purely consequential case.  In 2007, he was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison.

A well-known Texas attorney, Dick DeGuerin served as the defense attorney.  A famous and passionate prosecutor, Kelly Siegler aggressively presented the case for the state.  By her own admittance, the case was consequential, but she wholeheartedly believed that David Temple was guilty. 

Evidence in the Belinda Temple Murder Case

In Belinda Temple's murder case, there were no eye witnesses. No fingerprints. No DNA.  No ballistics whatsoever.   There was no murder weapon after an extensive search for it, but none the less, David Temple was found guilty even though he had a well documented alibi. 

What could convince a jury that David Temple was guilty of murdering Belinda Temple beyond a reasonable doubt with no hard evidence? 

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Listening to Kelly Siegler tell the story from her point of view which was obviously based on belief of David Temple's guilt, it is difficult not to believe that he pulled the trigger…

The glass of the back door was broken, which seemingly made it look like forced entry; however, the glass from the broken window was further inside the house causing questions about the door being open when the glass was broken.  Investigators also voiced there doubts that it was a burglary because expensive jewelry was left lying out and wasn't taken.      

Some neighbor kids said they heard a shot at a time that would have cleared David Temple because he was seen on surveillance tape with their son at a store around that time.  The prosecution dismissed this on a whim that the boys were mistaken. 

David was watching his son who was picked from child care early because he was sick.  This aided the argument that it was unreasonable that he and his son would be running errands that weren't really necessary.  It was presented that the intention of going out with a sick child was to create an alibi. 

Other damning evidence surrounded the fact that the couple had a protective dog.  This in itself could discourage a burglar from entering the residence.  Defense presented that the dog was in the garage, but the jury didn't buy it. 

Possibility the most damaging evidence was that David Temple was having an affair.  After his wife's death, he married his mistress.  He and his new wife were raising his and Belinda's son prior to his arrest.  The infidelity was presented as a motive in the murder trial.

What Was Not Presented…

By WhisperToMe (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Evidence was found in the investigative files that there was a similar break-in prior to the Belinda Temple murder along with other findings that could have been beneficial to the defense. 

These findings apparently were not shared with the defense at the time of the David Temple murder trial.  This led to accusations of misconduct in regard to the prosecution withholding evidence. 

This, along with talk from Temple's new attorneys about loads of evidence to prove another party's guilt, managed to get a recommendation from a judge who says that David Temple is entitled to a new trial in 2015.  The case will be presented to a higher court in Texas for the final decision of whether or not a new trial will be granted.

Does Infidelity equal murder?

David Temple has always maintained his innocence in the Belinda Temple murder.  Perhaps he will receive the chance to have the evidence represented in hopes for his conviction to be overturned and for him to be released from prison.

If David Temple is not guilty, of course he should be released.  He admits that infidelity in his marriage was wrong.  Perhaps a lesson was learned… not only shall you not murder, you shall not commit adultery.  It has been proven, infidelity can lead to judgment of guilt in the eyes of jury if your spouse is murdered, even if there is no hard evidence.  

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