Murder suspect told brother about shooting, court documents show

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 | 2:32 p.m. CDT; updated 5:29 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, October 13, 2009

COLUMBIA — About half an hour after Nicole Crumby was found lying dead last week in the Red Roof Inn parking lot, Blake Logan told his brother that he thought he shot her, court documents show.

According to a probable cause statement filed in the 13th Circuit Court for Boone County, Crumby and Logan were meeting on the night of Oct. 8 to complete a deal for marijuana. Logan, 18, told his brother Matt Logan that after a disagreement with Crumby, he attempted to take the drugs from her and “the gun went off.”

Police would not comment on the amount of marijuana involved in the deal.

Crumby, 26, was pronounced dead shortly after 8:45 that night in the motel’s parking lot at 201 E. Texas Ave. She suffered a gunshot wound to the back of the head, Boone County Medical Examiner Ariel Goldschmidt said.  

Logan has been charged with second-degree murder, first-degree robbery and armed criminal action. He is being held at the Boone County Jail on $1 million bond.

In an interview with police that night, Logan said he and Crumby had talked by cell phone to negotiate a marijuana deal, according to court documents. He said Crumby wanted to meet at the motel, but he denied that the two actually ever met. The two were former neighbors on Millbrook Drive off Scott Boulevard, and police believe they knew each other before the homicide.

Police talked to Matt Logan at about 5 the next morning, when he told them about the conversation he had with his brother the night before. Matt Logan told police that Blake said he was in a car with Crumby and tried to take the drugs from her at gunpoint, according to court documents. The two then got into an altercation and the gun went off, Blake reportedly told his brother. Crumby fell from the car, and Blake left the parking lot.

Matt Logan, 20, also was arrested on three out-of-county warrants for charges including larceny and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Witnesses at the motel reported hearing a loud bang and seeing a white car speeding away from the scene. They said the car struck a red Chevrolet Suburban in the parking lot, according to court documents. Police later viewed video surveillance from the parking lot and confirmed the witnesses' account.

Just an hour later, at about 9:45 p.m., Boone County sheriff’s deputies located the suspected vehicle at the Midway Travel Plaza a few miles west of Columbia. Inside were Logan and his girlfriend, 19-year-old Nicole Palmer, also of Columbia. The car, a white Chevrolet Impala, was registered to Palmer.

According to court documents, detectives found a spent 9mm casing in the back seat and a packed suitcase in the trunk. The vehicle also appeared to have red paint on it. Police believe the two were attempting to flee.

Palmer was arrested Friday on suspicion of hindering prosecution; distribution, delivery, manufacture or production of a controlled substance; and use or possession of drug paraphernalia. Sgt. Ken Hammond said police do not believe Palmer was present at the time of the homicide. Palmer told police in an interview that she was asleep at her apartment when Logan woke her and told her he had hit something with the car.

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