Testimony began today in the first-degree murder trial of a Nixa man accused of killing his roommate four years ago.



Christian County Prosecutor Ron Cleek says that Thomas Naumann (a.) helped Crystal Broyles administer a lethal dose of cocaine to David Allen Masters because the man was behind in rent and was allegedly making sexual advances towards Broyles.

Naumann's attorney, Dean Price (a.,) says that it was Broyles who tied Masters up to a chair with zip ties and administered the "hot shot" that killed the former attorney, and that his client was in the living room when she did it.


Masters (a.), a father of seven and the former prosecutor of Macon County, literally went from living in Wardell Mansion to begging for his life in a rat infested house a few hundred miles from where he was sworn to uphold the law.


Wardell Mansion (above)

Gov. John Ashcroft appointed Masters as prosecutor of Macon County in 1990. In 1998, after two terms as prosecutor, Masters lost his bid for re-election and returned to private practice.

In the fall of 2003, a former client of Masters torched his office, his wife filed for divorce (that the couple didn't go through with) and the historic house that the family lived in became a money pit. That is when family and friends say his life descended into a drug nightmare. Several former clients of Masters say that he took their money and never provided legal services for them.

Masters made break for a fresh start in southwest Missouri. He ended up at an Extended Stay Hotel in Springfield where prosecutors say he met Naumann while he was dealing drugs out of his hotel room.


Cleek (a.) is being assisted by his chief assistant, Donovan Dobbs, who called seven witnesses to the stand for the state today.

The first witness called to the stand was James Hildenbrand. Hildenbrand testified that he and his son's went to go check on the progress of some property that was being developed near their home on Nelson Mill Road abut 5 p.m. on March 3, 2005.

Hildenbrand told the jury that he was about halfway down a red dirt road that ran along the James River when he drove upon what he first thought was a "mannequin" with a rope tied around it's neck surrounded by crushed beer cans and a windshield wiper arm.

Hilderbrand said that he got out of his truck and tugged on the rope and then realized that it was a human body. Not wanting his boys to see the gruesome discovery he backed out and told his wife to call 911.

Former Christian County Sheriff's deputy Brian Hicks was the states second witness. He was the first officer on the scene and told jurors that he could clearly see a deceased person and called for back-up.

Hicks recounted for jurors a scene that took place about three weeks before Masters was found dead in which he was called to a water rescue at Wilson's Low Water Bridge.

A red Dodge Dakota was stuck in the water, and after water rescue plucked a man from the water he was asked to identify himself. Hicks testified that he knew the man had lied about his identity when dispatchers relayed that descriptors for the name belonged to a man that was 6' 3" and 280 pounds----clearly not the man in the back of the ambulance. When asked again, the man identified himself as Thomas Naumann.



Retired Highway Patrol investigator Miles Parks was next on the stand. He testified that he found the body of a white man partially inside a black sleeping bag with the legs and feet hanging out of it.....a black zip tie still attached to his left wrist.

Parks says that it was apparent that the body had been dumped as there were no footprints anywhere in the mud that surround Masters body.

The fourth witness in the states case was Highway Patrol investigator Rob Vaughn who was present at the autopsy of Masters. Autopsy pictures entered into evidence during Vaughn's testimony showed that Masters body was wrapped in several black straps with a white nylon rope running through the middle of them.

Detective Terry Owen testified that he helped develop a list of suspects then conducted surveillance on a house on N. Main in Nixa while cops waited for a search warrant. Owen said there was a Dodge Dakota with beer cans in the bed of the pickup in the driveway and that when someone went outside to smoke a woman arrived in a red car.

Owen said that he believed the wiper arm found near the body was crucial evidence and went to several car dealerships in an attempt to find out what kind of vehicle it belonged too. He found out when he reached a Dodge dealership.....a Dodge Dakota.

Masters first cousin, William Jamieson, was called by Dobbs to identify photos of Masters surrounded by his family and one of the man he loved in death.

The state's last witness for the day was Christian County Sheriff's Detective Annette Ramsey. Ramsey identified several pieces of evidence collected from the crime scene that belonged to Masters; a drivers license and torn duct tape in a garbage bag, several credit cards, a checkbook, a wallet some insulin and some including a credit card discovered in a pair of jeans.

She also identified a length of rope, a piece of duct tape found in the back of a 1988 Dodge Dakota parked in the driveway of the N. Main residence as being similar to the one found tied around Masters’ body.

On cross examination Price asked Ramsey if it appeared that the back window of the truck had been repaired with duct tape. Ramsey replied, "it does."

Prosecutors say they will call several witnesses to the stand that have a checkered past. They include a former cellmate of Naumann's, David Craig.

During Cleek's opening statement today he told jurors that Craig will testify that Naumann described Masters death to the jailhouse snitch in detail. Price told jurors not to make up their minds to quickly about Craig's because he has made several deal with prosecutors in exchange for testimony in different counties--including Cleek.

In the defenses opening statement Price told jurors that Craig lied while under oath in pretrial depositions when asked if he'd ever helped law enforcers before. Price said that Craig, "Mr. Craig is someone who has made a 20-year career out of exchanging testimony for leniency, and that it worked again.”




Broyles (a.), who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for her role in Naumann's death in 2006, has invoked her fifth amendment rights and will not testify at Naumann's trial. She is serving 13 years in prison at .


***court images courtesy Christian County Headliner

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I GUESS I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO FOLLOW THIS TRIAL AGAINST NAUMANN I JUST DO NOT SEE THE EVIDENCE THAT HE HAD ANY DIRECT RESPONSIBILITY IN THE DEATH ITSELF I MEAN HE SHOULD NOT HAVE ALLOWED THIS TO HAPPEN IN HIS HOME AND SHOULD HAVE TRIED TO STOP IT AND DEFINATELY SHOULD HAVE CALLED POLICE AND HELPING TO DUMP THE BODY WAS HIS TRUE CRIME. BUT HOW COME THEY CAN CHARGE HIM WITH 1ST DEGREE MURDER ISNT THAT PREMEDITATION I JUST DONT SEE IT.

Kathee Baird said...

Prosecuotrs charged Naumann with first-dgree murder because he acted in concert (together) to cause Masters death.

I have to be honest, I thought the jury was going to come back with a manslaugter convicttion and was SHOCKED when they came back with a first.

In evidence presented at trail no one ever admitted or says they witnessed WHO shot Mr. Masters up with the lethal injection.

Up until just a few weeks before the trial Naumann was facing the death penalty.

I think the judge was right when he threw out the jurys conviction and found Naumann guilty of second-degree murder (that's what Broyles got,) and sentenced him to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

Anonymous said...

I'M CURIOUS WHAT BROYLES HAS TO SAY.

Anonymous said...

They will never get the full story its a nightmare of proportions no one could imagine unless you knew the players of this sick twisted game of life and death that they play. Storment hasn't changed except to maybe become more evil and self centered while destroying everyone in her path. Newman never should have received that sentence

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