A Williamsburg woman, who allegedly shot and killed her two teenage daughters and her husband on Jan. 13, pleaded not guilty to three counts of murder Friday, and two counts of criminal attempt to commit the murder of a police officer.
Courtney Taylor’s attorney, public advocate Ron Findell, entered a not guilty plea on her behalf to all the charges during her arraignment, which was held about noon Friday in London before Laurel District Judge John Chappell.
Chappell was appointed to handle the case after Whitley District Judge Fred White recused himself.
Taylor, who was wearing a pink jail jumpsuit and sitting in wheelchair, and Findell were both inside a room at the Whitley County Detention Center and appeared for the arraignment via closed circuit video. It is a common procedure for defendants to appear for district court arraignments via video.
Chappell noted during Friday’s hearing that he was informed Thursday Taylor wished to speak with a public defender or public advocate and he appointed the public advocate’s office to represent her.
Chappell scheduled a preliminary hearing in the case for 1 p.m. Wednesday in Whitley District Court in Williamsburg.
Taylor, 41, is expected to appear in court in person that day for the preliminary hearing.
During Friday’s hearing, Chappell noted that he previously set bond in the case at $1 million cash, but he added that Taylor is classified as a low bond risk and had no prior criminal offenses.
Findell asked Chappell to lower Taylor’s bond to $100,000.
Chappell declined to do so citing both the safety of the defendant and others in the community.
If she posts bond, she would be required to be on home incarceration and to wear an ankle-monitoring device, according to her bond decision.
A couple of Taylor’s family members were present in court for Friday’s hearing, but declined to speak with the media.
The victims in the murder case were Taylor’s husband, Larry Taylor, 56, and their two daughters, Jessie Taylor, 18, and Jolee Taylor, 13, who were found dead at their residence located at 2070 South US25W, Williamsburg, which is near the Savoy community.
The three family members were found in their beds and died from gunshot wounds to the head.
Authorities haven’t said how many times each victim was shot.
A relative went to check on the family about 10 p.m. on Jan. 13, and after forcing his way into the home through the back door discovered at least one victim dead in their bed.
Whitley County Sheriff’s deputies James Fox and Jonas Saunders then responded to a 911 call. After entering the home, Courtney Taylor allegedly pointed a gun at the two officers, and Saunders shot her twice, once in the upper torso and once in the abdomen.
She was transported to the University of Kentucky Medical Center for treatment, and was released from the hospital about 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Kentucky State Police Detective Billy Correll then immediately transported her back to Williamsburg where she was lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.
The attempted murder charges stem from allegedly pointing a gun at the two deputies.