Trial continued for pair accused in Sidwell murder

Posted September 4, 2014 at 1:13 pm

The trial of two local residents, charged with the October 2013 death of 19-year-old Jimmy Sidwell, Jr., has been continued in Clinton Circuit Court.

Andrea Byler and Michael E. Thompson were originally scheduled to stand trial next month in connection with Sidwell’s death. The court had set aside four days, October 28-31, for the trial to take place.

During motion hour in Clinton Circuit Court on Thursday, August 14, Judge David L. Williams sustained a motion for continuance in the case against each defendant, apparently to await test results relating to the case.

Byler is charged with murder and two counts of tampering with physical evidence while co-defendant Thompson is charged with murder, one count of tampering with physical evidence and first degree robbery.

Both defendants were arrested by Kentucky State Police on October 27 of last year and charged in connection with Sidwell’s death.

The victim’s body was found the previous day underneath an unoccupied trailer on Cody Lane in South Albany, behind Lee’s Famous Recipe.

Albany Police Officers Jim Guffey and Brad Cross were first to arrive on the scene, after 911 dispatch had received a call on the afternoon of October 26. Officers said at the time that the caller (to dispatch) was putting a roof on a building and saw the body under an abandoned trailer where they were working.

Police Chief Ernest Guffey also noted at the time of the incident that the body may have been deceased “for a day or so,” and “We also determined that it wasn’t the initial crime scene because there just wasn’t enough blood there. With the wounds the body had sustained, there would have been a lot of blood.”

Preliminary autopsy results later revealed Sidwell had died from multiple stab wounds to the upper torso.

Following the discovery of the body, the Kentucky State Police Crime Scene Response Team was called to the scene.

Byler and Thompson were arrested the day after Sidwell’s body was discovered and lodged in Clinton County Jail with KSP Detective Ricky Brooks leading the investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by Commonwealth Attorney Jesse Stockton. Byler is being represented by Attorney Thomas Carroll of Monticello while Thompson is being represented by Public Defender Brad Shuffett.

During court proceedings on August 14, Judge Williams did not set a new trial date, but did schedule a pretrial conference for November 13 at 9 a.m.