Deliberations begin in girlfriend killing trialPosted: Updated:
PHOENIX (AP) -- Juror deliberations began Wednesday in the trial of a Tempe man charged in the 2010 shooting death of his girlfriend.
Wade Bradford also is charged in the 2006 death of a previous girlfriend whose body was found in 2011.
However, the two cases are being tried separately, and jurors in the 2010 case were not made aware of the other charges after a judge found it could prejudice the panel, given the two killings are not connected.
Bradford, who operated massage parlors, met Natalie Allan when she began working in one of his businesses, and the pair soon began dating.
Allan, 27, also began seeing another man in 2009 whom she met as one of her massage clients.
In May 2010, according to police, Allan went to Bradford's home along with her new boyfriend to collect her belongings. Authorities say Bradford shot her in the head in his garage then threatened the boyfriend, Kevin Myles, at gunpoint.
Bradford says the shooting was self-defense after Myles charged at him, causing the gun to accidentally discharge. He is also charged with aggravated assault.
His trial began in mid-January.
Prosecutor Kristin Larish described Allan as a "free spirit" who was trying to move away from the bad things in her life. She said Bradford was the "puppet master" who kept Allan under his thumb.
Allan's mother told authorities that her daughter worked in prostitution and exotic dancing.
Myles explained to jurors during the trial that he wanted to help Allan change her life.
According to prosecutors, Allan had finally separated from Bradford and began dating Myles when the pair went to Bradford's Tempe condo to collect her belongings. As they were inside Bradford's garage, Myles said Bradford arrived, suddenly pulled out a gun and shot Allan in the back of the head.
Defense lawyer Jamie Jackson told jurors Myles charged at Bradford "out of nowhere," and the gun accidentally fired. Jackson said Bradford left the scene, unaware that he had shot and killed the woman until he was arrested a few days later.
Separately, Bradford is charged with murder in the death of a previous girlfriend who disappeared in 2006. The body of Eleanor Su, 39, wasn't discovered until 2011 after Bradford was jailed in the Allan shooting. Authorities say Su's decomposing body was found in an abandoned storage unit that had been rented to Bradford.
When Su disappeared, Bradford told authorities she left him. He denies involvement in her killing and now faces first-degree murder and kidnapping charges in that case. A trial date has not yet been set.