Murder case to be tried nearly 10 years after killing

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A trial connected to the death of a Texarkana man who was killed in 2012 was set for jury selection Monday in January 2022.

Alana Leigh Coleman, 39, appeared from the Bowie County jail via video for a hearing before 5th District Judge Bill Miller. Coleman is charged with capital murder in the August 12, 2012, stabbing death of Donald Ray Morris.

Coleman allegedly fled to Mexico after Morris’ death. She was arrested and brought back to the U.S. in October of last year.

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Coleman’s attorney, Butch Dunbar of Texarkana, told Miller on Monday that the case is ready for a scheduling order. Assistant District Attorney Katie Carter said that she and Dunbar agree they can be ready to try the case next year.

Miller set the case for jury selection Jan. 25.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Morris’ body was found by police after a manager at the Redwood Apartments at 3400 W 7th Street noticed a broken window with blood on it and blood on the front door of Morris’ apartment. A pair of broken scissors and a broken knife were collected from the scene.

Neighbors of Morris’ reported seeing him the afternoon of his death. They also reported seeing a car Coleman was known to drive when she was allegedly at the complex working as a prostitute. A sample of DNA collected at the crime scene is allegedly a match to Coleman’s DNA and a camera with nude photos of Coleman was allegedly collected as evidence from the crime scene.

The state is not seeking the death penalty. If found guilty of capital murder, Coleman faces life without parole.

In addition to the Capital Murder charge, Coleman also had warrants for Probation Violation/Possession of Controlled Substance and Failure to Appear for a misdemeanor theft charge. Her bond is set at $1 million.

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