Murder charge filed in Cedar City domestic violence death
The Cedar City man who police say beat his girlfriend to death has been charged with murder.
Kerry Lynn Richardson, 50, is charged in 5th District Court with murder, a first degree felony, along with possession of a controlled substance, a third degree felony, and use or possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor.
The morning of Sept. 9, Cedar City police officers went to a home at 1597 N. Cedar Blvd., and found 47-year-old Tracy Ellen Little lying amid a bloody scene in the bedroom.
According to a probable cause statement filed in 5th District Court, the walls, ceiling, floor, bedding and clothing in the bedroom and the floors, walls and ceiling of the adjoining bathroom were covered in blood.
Little had suffered multiple head and face fractures and was flown to Intermountain Medical Center in Murray, the probable cause statement shows. She died 10 days later.
Richardson was originally charged with aggravated assault, a second degree felony, but prosecutors requested that the charge be amended to murder two months after Little's death.
A judge granted the amended charge Tuesday, during a preliminary hearing for Richardson. A medical examiner testified before the hearing was continued to Dec. 14 because of the new charge.
Police said they discovered Richardson, Little's boyfriend for 11 years, with blood on his hands, feet, face and back, but no visible injuries on Sept. 9. They also found a methamphetamine pipe and several empty beer bottles inside the home.
Richardson told police that he had smoked methamphetamine with Little and drank the beer, the statement shows. He told police he couldn't explain how Little was injured, but said the two of them had been the only people inside the home, the statement shows.
He told police that he believed that Little had been cheating on him and said they "talked about this" after she returned home about 2 a.m., documents show.
Richardson claimed he then fell asleep and woke up later when he heard Little having trouble breathing and called 911.