- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 26, 2012

The parents of Jayna Murray, the woman brutally slain by her Lululemon Athletica co-worker in March, want more than to ensure their daughter’s killer never walks free. They also want a guarantee she can’t profit from her crime.

In a victim impact statement submitted to the court before Friday’s sentencing, Murray’s father requested that neither his daughter’s convicted co-worker, Brittany Norwood, nor her family ever be allowed to reap the monetary benefits of any books, movies or media spawned from the horrific crime. Murray’s family and prosecutors are also asking Circuit Court Judge Robert A. Greenberg for a sentence of life without the possibility of parole.

Norwood, 29, was convicted in November of bludgeoning and stabbing 30-year-old Murray to death in the back room of the high-end yoga apparel store on Bethesda Row after they had finished a work shift together.

After the murder, which Norwood’s defense attorney argued was the result of his client having “lost it” during the argument, the woman staged the gruesome crime scene to make it appear as if she had been tortured and raped alongside Murray.

The exceptionally brutal murder — which left 331 identifiable wounds on Murray’s body - coupled with Norwood’s elaborate cover-up story grabbed headlines for months and made for a dramatic storyline that could rival many crime dramas.

While it was unclear whether the judge in this case could ban Norwood’s family from collecting profit resulting from the crime, a federal statute does outline the process of forfeiture of collateral profits of a crime.

Under federal law, money collected under a forfeiture order is held in escrow and can be used only in specific ways, such as to pay fines associated with the crime or to be donated to a fund for crime victims.

In addition to the Murray family’s impact statements, letters from Norwood’s friends and family requesting leniency in her sentencing were also submitted to the court.

The letters describe Norwood as a loving aunt who often baby-sat her sister’s children, a bright student, and a caring person who always made time for her family and friends. Time and again, the authors describe the shock they felt when they heard of the charges against her.

“I am humbly requesting that Brittany be sentenced to life and not life without parole,” wrote her father, Earl Norwood. “I know Brittany is a good person and will do everything in her power to make amends for what has happened if given a chance.”

Norwood is scheduled to be sentenced at 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Montgomery County courthouse.

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