The defense for Jason Carter, who will soon be facing a criminal trial on murder charges, has filed a motion to vacate the judgment in the civil trial brought against him due to new exculpatory evidence, and alleges that there was “exculpatory evidence in existence at the time of the civil trial indicating John and/or Joel Followill murdered Shirley Carter,” and that there is “exculpatory evidence indicating the potential involvement of Michael McDonald in Shirley Carter’s death.”

Jason’s mother, 68-year-old Shirley Carter, was murdered in 2015 with a civil trial brought against Jason by his father Billy Carter in 2016. Jason was found liable for the death of his mother in the civil trial, with criminal charges brought against him soon after the civil trial ended.

The defense for Jason Carter alleges that exculpatory evidence, which has been provided by the state in discovery for the criminal trial including hundreds of documents and many hours of audio recordings, would have allowed the defense to give additional supporting evidence in the civil trial that someone other than Jason shot and killed Shirley Carter.
The defense alleges that witness statements collected by the state indicate the involvement of the Followill brothers. The witness statements from multiple sources allege that the Followills discussed the murder on multiple occasions, and were seen by witnesses driving a white vehicle near the time of the murder. Other witness statements describe a white vehicle in the neighborhood at the time of the murder that was not usually in the neighborhood.

The defense also alleges that the potential involvement of Michael McDonald is due to a land dispute. The defense alleges that there are inconsistencies with McDonald’s alibi due to McDonald stating he had made several calls while hanging flyers around town during the time of the murder, while in fact there was only one call made, and the discussion of a “hit man” to use in the land dispute while in conversation with another person.

Bill Carter’s attorney, Mark Weinhardt, tells KNIA/KRLS News

“Bill Carter is certain that the jury reached the right decision last December when it found his son Jason liable for the murder of Bill’s wife Shirley. Bill will vigorously oppose this attempt to change the outcome of the civil trial. At trial, Jason, his lawyers, and their expert agreed that the robbery was staged because drugs and money were not taken, and because the killer used a rifle that was missing from the house.

Bill finds it ironic that the motion complains about “incomplete evidence,” because that is exactly what is contained in the motion – incomplete evidence. Bill looks forward to a hearing on the motion where all of the evidence can be discussed. Bill has suffered considerably from this immense tragedy, and has even endured Jason accusing him of the murder. No one wishes more than Bill that Jason wasn’t the murderer but Bill is confident that the verdict in the civil trial will be upheld.”

Story last updated at 7:38am 5/31. A full look at the court petition can be found below.

Brief in Support of Petition for Relief