Bellevue Coffee Shop Killing Civil Trial Set for April
HAILEY, Idaho (KLIX)-A civil trial is set to take place in a Blaine County courtroom this April regarding the murder/suicide at a Bellevue coffee shop in 2020. According to court documents, the family of Ashley Midby is suing the estate of her former boyfriend, the Hailey Police Department, Blaine County Sheriff's Office, and Bellevue Marshal's Office alleging the mishandling of events that lead up to her murder. The lawsuit claims wrongful death, negligent infliction of emotion distress, intentional infliction of emotion distress, negligence of all law enforcement agencies involved, and violation of substantive due process. According to Idaho State Police, on October 22, troopers were called to a coffee shop on Main Street in Bellevue where 28-year-old Jared Murphy and 34-year-old Ashley Midby were found dead, shot to death. Investigators determined it was a murder-suicide. At the time Murphy was a police officer with the City of Hailey.
The lawsuit, filed on October 29, 2020, alleges Murphy was hired by the police department without a proper background check and his previous resignations were not looked into properly. According to court documents, Murphy and Midby had been in a relationship since June 2018. It was known that Murphy often would have outbursts of anger towards Midby, especially while drinking. The lawsuit states that on October 15, 2020, Midby went to a Wood River Valley advocacy group for help fearing Murphy was going to "blow again."
On October 19, 2020, Midby informed her mother that Murphy acted out and was abusing their dog. She had asked her mother to pick her up. Law enforcement was called and the Hailey Police, Blaine County Sheriff's deputy, and Bellevue Marshal arrived. The lawsuit alleges Midby informed officers of the situation and said she was fearful for her life and said she needed a safe way to get out. "Despite receiving evidence that Jared had assaulted Ashley, HPD, BCSO, nor BMO took steps to arrest Jared or report the events to a prosecutor's office for filing of criminal charges. Nor did any of these agencies offer Ashley information about obtaining a civil protection order and/or no-contact order, much less provide her assistance with obtaining such order," states the lawsuit.
On October 20, 2020, Murphy was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation into the October 19, incident. The lawsuit notes Murphy was not instructed to hand over his service weapon or police badge. Late on October 22, Murphy was informed by his supervisor he would have to resign or be fired and would need to make a decision by October 26. The lawsuit again states Murphy was not told to hand over his service weapon or badge at the time. Allegedly, authorities were told of Murphy's past behavior of suicidal tendencies in which he pointed a loaded gun at his head and would leave suicide notes.
A pretrial hearing is scheduled for March 21, with the trial set for April 12.