News and Tribune

Archive

October 21, 2013

Prosecutor says Gibson lured woman to his home to sexually assault, kill her

Prosecutors seeking death penalty

NEW ALBANY — The murder trial of William Clyde Gibson III began this morning in a Floyd County court where prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for the New Albany man who is accused of murdering a 75-year-old woman last year.

Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson told the jury — which was selected and ushered in from Dearborn County — that Gibson sexually assaulted Christine Whitis, Clarksville, before killing the woman in his Woodbourne Drive home in April 2012. Henderson said Whitis and Gibson knew each other, as she had been the best friend of his mother, who passed months before he called Whitis’ cell phone April 18.

Gibson reached Whitis about 10:50 a.m., but she was preoccupied with a doctor’s visit and called Gibson back minutes after noon, Henderson told the jurors. Henderson claimed Gibson used the pretense that he was grieving from his mother’s passing to lure Whitis to his home. He said Gibson treated Whitis as his “prey” after she came to the home to give her support.

During the opening remarks, Henderson showed a color photograph of Whitis on a large projection screen and described her as an active, vibrant and healthy widow with a strong relationship with her son and grandchildren.

“She is loved and she loved,” Henderson said as he introduced the case to the jurors.

Once Whitis had entered Gibson’s home, which was in probate status and had previously belonged to his mother, he quickly began his sexual assault, Henderson said.

“As he brought her in, he knew what he was going to do to her,” Henderson said, adding that once the assault began, “There was no one to hear her scream. There was no one to hear her cries.”

He said the brutal assault left Whitis with bite marks on her genital area and evidence that Gibson had inserted his fist into her vagina.

The next day, with Whitis in the home’s attached garage, Henderson said Gibson cut off her breast as “a trophy” before he went for lunch at Hooters in Whitis’ vehicle.

While Gibson was away from the home, one of his sisters came to the house, found the remains in the garage and called authorities.

Gibson was located driving Whitis’ minivan and he was apprehended at the Grant Line Road Walmart.

Henderson’s first three witnesses have been all been officers with the New Albany Police Department who responded to Gibson’s home about 3 p.m. April 19, 2012.

The trial is being held in Floyd County Superior Court No. 1 with Judge Susan Orth presiding.

Gibson is being represented by attorneys J. Patrick Biggs and George Streib. The trial is expected to last two weeks, according to court officials.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
LOCAL MAGAZINES
2013 Photos of the year


Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.

SPECIAL CONTENT
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
2013 Photos of the year


Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.