After spending the last two years awaiting trial for murder, a Clay County woman saw her case dismissed due to a lack of evidence Tuesday.
Trinity Noland,35, was arrested in September 2016 for the murder of Shaun Edward Simpson, of Lawton. Clay County officials said Simpson was found lying on his back in a living room with a large pool of blood around his head and body. When law enforcement arrived at the home , deputies said Noland told them Simpson arrived at the home with a woman and started assaulting her.
She said she became alarmed and got her gun out of a safe while the assault continued into the kitchen. During an altercation with Simpson and another man at the home, Noland said she fired one shot at Simpson. Since her arrest, Noland has claimed self-defense, something the district attorney and Clay County investigators have said was not supported by the evidence at the scene.
Noland , along with Zachary Trumble, are still charged in connection with two 2016 armed robberies in Wichita Falls. According to police, Trumble admitted to the robberies and said Noland drove the getaway car. Investigators said Noland first denied any involvement with the robberies, but after more questioning admitted she was there.
Here is the official statement from 97th District Attorney Casey Polhemus about the murder case dismissal.
97th District Attorney Casey Polhemus and Clay County Sheriff Kenny Lemons report that the murder charge pending against Defendant Trinity Noland was dismissed Monday, July 16, 2018 due to insufficient evidence. The case stems from a shooting that resulted in a fatality in Henrietta on September 24, 2016. Noland was arrested on the night of the shooting after telling officers she was the shooter, although she claimed she had done so in self-defense. The case was initially investigated by the Clay County Sheriff’s Office. As the investigation continued, the District Attorney and Clay County investigators discovered that despite Noland’s statement, the evidence did not support her account of what had occurred on the night of the shooting. “I believe the exculpatory evidence in this case requires a dismissal. It is simply the right thing to do. The Clay County Sheriff’s Office did a great job putting the case together, but sometimes thorough investigations lead to unexpected results. We believe the evidence points in a different direction,” Polhemus said. According to Polhemus, the case remains under investigation by both the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and the District Attorney’s Office: “The dismissal against Noland is not the end. The Sheriff and I will continue to work together to ensure that justice is done in this case.”