‘I’m not a cold-blooded murderer:’ Jimmy Rauhuff strongly denies killing neighbor James Moser in police interview
By J.J. Kindred | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
“I’m not a cold-blooded murderer.”
Using those words, a Friendsville man strongly denied during a police interview that he killed his neighbor.
Jimmy Lynn Rauhuff, 42, Cave Road, is accused of beating 65-year-old James Arthur Moser to death inside Moser’s home, also on Cave Road, on Oct. 16, 2010.
He is charged with first-degree premeditated murder, first-degree murder while perpetrating an aggravated burglary, first-degree murder during the perpetration of a theft, aggravated burglary and theft greater than $500.
Rauhuff’s alleged accomplice, Crystal Victoria Summey, 36, Stephens Road, Greenback, is also being held in the Blount County Detention Facility. Her trial is scheduled for next month. Both are being held on $750,000 bonds.
As Rauhuff’s trial in Blount County Circuit Court entered its third day, Blount County Sheriff’s Office Detective Doug Davis, the lead investigator in the case, testified that Rauhuff implicated Summey in the slaying, saying she had a temper and often stole from Moser.
Summey did not have a car, but drove one that may have belonged to her parents. Rauhuff said Summey drove to Moser’s home the day of the slaying, while Rauhuff maintained that he was not there, Davis testified.
Davis said he went to Summey’s home after Moser’s body was discovered, but she denied involvement.
Blount County Assistant District Attorney Clinton Frazier played a recording of a phone conversation between Summey and Rauhuff.
“Why would I try to get you in trouble?” Rauhuff said to Summey. “They thought you done it. I don’t know what happened to Jim (Moser). They hadn’t told me anything.”
“I’m freaking out, Jimmy. I’m literally freaking out,” Summey answered.
Davis said he saw Rauhuff three days after the slaying in Moser’s driveway, and Rauhuff told him he thought Summey could have committed the crime, as she tried to commit suicide the night before and wound up in the hospital.
Frazier played a video of an interview Rauhuff conducted with Davis almost a week after the slaying. Rauhuff told Davis the night of the slaying, Summey came over to his home with a large amount of money and wanted to party. He said he wasn’t sure where she got the money.
“She steals from them. They don’t trust her with nothing,” Rauhuff said about the relationship Summey had with her parents.
Davis told Rauhuff that Summey tried to “throw him under the bus,” telling him that Summey called Moser and that Moser was shouting expletives at her, and claimed that Rauhuff stole from Moser and that he admitted he committed the crime.
But Rauhuff disputed the claim, telling Davis that Moser probably shouted expletives at Summey because she stole money from him and owed him, and he was at his breaking point with her.
‘She’s a con’
“Ask anyone in (the neighborhood) the same thing,” Rauhuff said. “There was always drama, always something. She’s a con, and she’s lied to me before.”
Davis said that both Rauhuff’s and Summey’s stories were far off, but Rauhuff maintained his innocence. “I will try all that I can to prove this wrong,” he said.
“Are you a cold-blooded murderer?” Davis asked in response, adding that Summey said Rauhuff had a hammer that he beat Moser with and things got out of hand.
“No, no,” Rauhuff said, tearfully. “I have kids, man. I have never killed anyone in my life. This is bull (expletive), man. I’m not a cold-hearted killer. I had no reason in this world to hurt Jim.”
The trial continues with more testimony at 9 a.m. today.