Jury finds Longview man guilty of drugging, killing woman

Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 12:43 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 21, 2022 at 4:11 PM CDT
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LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - The trial for a Longview man accused of killing a woman in January 2021 ended Wednesday with the jury finding him guilty.

Joshua Ross McCuller, 40, of Longview, was on trial in Judge Alfonso Charles’ courtroom for the murder of social worker Lori Follis.

The jury will begin hearing arguments for sentencing at 9 a.m.

The jury deliberated for about an hour.

Wednesday, Tarrant County Medical Examiner Dr. Tasha Greenberg, took the stand.

Greenberg said Follis had been given a sleeping pill and the effects could have caused disorientation. In day two of the trial, a journal shown as evidence showed McCuller was going to fix up a cup with sleeping pills for Follis to take. He also said the same to the detective, according to his testimony on Tuesday.

Greenberg explained that there is no medical examiner in Gregg or Harrison Counties, so bodies are sent to a private company. Follis’ body was sent to Tyler.

Greenberg is the person who examined Follis’ body after the alleged crime and put her findings in a report. Greenberg explained she, Follis, had blunt force injuries throughout her body. Numerous abrasions and contusions as well as bone fractures were found on her.

Greenberg said she believes Follis was struck from behind and believes the manner of death is homicide. She said the cause of death is blunt force injuries and internal injuries.

Closing arguments

The defense spoke to the jury on behalf of Joshua McCuller, saying that though his intent to kill Lori was stated, “intent doesn’t get you there.” Joshua abandoned his intentions, the defense said.

Other points Winn brought were that Josh’s fantasies are not real, and that there was evidence that Lori jumped in front of a car because her life was “in shambles.” Also noted that Lori did not sound lucid during the 911 call, but that she knew where she was.

The state spoke to the jury on behalf of Lori Follis. They say intent does matter, despite what the defense says. They say that though Lori was using drugs, her life was not “in shambles.” Also, McCuller did drug her coffee, defense said, and she fought him off. She had a broken forearm from trying to fight him off.

Also they brought up that Joshua McCullers did not call an ambulance for Lori after hitting her five times with a hammer, just police. She yelled out begging for an ambulance to be called to help her. They end by asking the jury to vote that McCuller is the reason for Lori Follis’ death.

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