Murder suspect charged with trying to have key witness killed
Jeffrey Wayne Clay, the Sebastopol man charged with the first-degree murder of a Yuba City doctor, was charged today in Sutter County Superior Court with soliciting someone to kill a witness in the case.
Clay was also charged, along with his mother, Joan Kathleen Clay, of dissuading or intimidating Clay's roommate, another witness in the case.
The intended victim of the murder solicitation was Sarah Garibay, said Deputy District Attorney Cameron King.
The doctor, Hyo Seoung Shin, allegedly was visiting Garibay on Sept. 3 when he was found with mortal injuries behind her apartment building in the 700 block of Shasta Street in Yuba City.
Clay's attorney, Kim L. Ryan, described Garibay as a "known hooker" in an earlier court hearing. Garibay was arrested on suspicion of being an accessory in Shin's death but was freed on her own recognizance.
Ryan described the new charges as "intimidation and leverage" against Clay.
King declined to say who Clay is charged with soliciting to kill Garibay. Clay's other attorney, Scott L. Fielder, called it "a little unclear" who that person is.
About three weeks after Clay was arrested, his mother "escorted" Clay's roommate, Noel Kearney, to the Sutter County Jail to meet with Clay. She and Clay dissuaded and intimidated Kearney from testifying against Clay, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday.
Joan Clay attended today's hearing for her son but was not arrested, although King said a warrant had been issued for her. The dissuading and intimidating charge carries a maximum six-year prison sentence.
Clay, a construction worker, was working on Yuba City's new water storage tank at Lincoln and Sanborn roads when he was arrested the day after Shin was found behind the apartment building.
Ryan asked Judge Brian Aronson to order the release of keys owned by the construction company that were confiscated from Clay when he was arrested.
Aronson agreed to release only keys needed to start construction vehicles, not those to buildings or storage lockers where he said evidence might be located.
Aronson set the next hearing in the Shin case and in the new solicitation case for Nov. 18.
CONTACT Rob Young at 749-4710 or at email@example.com