Neo-Nazi, 2 others face trial in killing of gay Phoenix man | Phoenix New Times


Neo-Nazi, 2 others face trial in killing of gay Phoenix man

An ex-con, his wife and a second man will stand trial in Phoenix this summer for their involvement in the fatal beatdown of Jake Kelly.
Shannon Young, Cory Young and Angel Mullooly are charged in connection with the beating death of a gay Phoenix man.
Shannon Young, Cory Young and Angel Mullooly are charged in connection with the beating death of a gay Phoenix man. Maricopa County Sheriff's Office
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Neo-Nazi skinhead Cory Young, his wife Shannon Young and co-defendant Angel Mullooly now face a July 22 trial for their alleged roles in the beating death of Jake Kelly, a 49-year-old gay Phoenix man.

The trio appeared in court on Tuesday before Maricopa County Superior Judge Daniel Martin for a pretrial conference for their alleged involvement in Kelly's homicide in August.

Mullooly, 34, and Young, 44, stood in shackles and dirty orange scrubs as Martin scheduled the trial's start date for this summer. Shannon Young, no longer in custody, appeared in street clothes. On Dec. 13, the 38-year-old woman's bond was reduced from $50,000 to $5,000. She made bail a week later, according to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

The Youngs each face one felony count of interfering with a police investigation. Mullooly is charged with second-degree murder and is being held on a $1 million bond. Cory Young, a tattoo artist with a violent prison record, is being held on a $100,000 bond.

Martin asked about a motion to have Cory Young's bail lowered. The motion was filed in mid-January by Young's then-attorney, Jacob Fausette, who recently left the case. Veteran defense attorney Richard Gaxiola replaced Fausette as Young's counsel on Jan. 31.

Gaxiola told the judge that he was withdrawing the motion to lower Young's bail. He was waiting to receive the case file and said he needed to review it before proceeding.

Gaxiola is known for successfully defending violent career criminals, alleged murderers, gang members and, most notably, members of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club.

After the hearing, Gaxiola declined to discuss the case with Phoenix New Times.

"I can tell you at the onset that Cory is presumed innocent under the law, and we will present a defense in accordance to the actual facts," he said.

Kelly's face was “completely pulverized” and he suffered multiple fractures of his skull, face, sternum and ribs, when he was attacked on Aug. 27. He also received numerous internal injuries, underwent several surgeries and was placed on life support.

Kelly's mother, Jan, later authorized the withdrawal of life support. Kelly was pronounced dead on Sep. 8.
click to enlarge Jake Kelly died on Sept. 8.
Jake Kelly was beaten and left in the driveway of his north Phoenix home on Aug. 27. He died from his injuries on Sept. 8.
Courtesy Jan Kelly

‘He killed my Jake’

Jake Kelly shared a house with the Youngs near Cave Creek Road and Union Hills Drive. He officiated at Shannon Young’s wedding to Cory Young. All three were friends with Mullooly, who lived nearby.

In interviews with police, the Youngs allegedly said they did not know how Kelly came to be battered and bloodied to the point of near death. The couple said all three of them went to a party on Aug. 27 and returned home drunk. The Youngs said they heard a loud bang outside, went to investigate and discovered Kelly lying in the driveway, semiconscious and nonverbal.

They did not call 911. Instead, they brought Kelly in, bathed him, changed his clothes, put him on a couch and waited 16 hours before taking him to the hospital. They claimed no one else was present when they found Kelly.

But in court documents, police described texts and statements to witnesses that contradict the Youngs' account.

One witness said Shannon Young texted her a photo of Kelly in a bathtub, bleeding from his injuries. The witness said Young allegedly told her later that "Cory and Angel fucked him up."

In cell phone data obtained by a police warrant, Mullooly allegedly sent a text message to his girlfriend, saying, "I fucked up Jake 2X babe." Another text from Mullooly to the same woman supposedly showed a photo of Kelly bleeding in front of a garage door, with Cory Young "crouched down, holding Jake's head" and Shannon Young standing to the side.

As she has for nearly all hearings in the case, Jan Kelly attended the status conference on Tuesday. Kelly has said her son's killing was a hate crime.

Kelly said Cory Young looked at her twice during Tuesday's hearing.

Is Kelly concerned for her own safety if Young is released?

"No, I'm really not," she said. "He killed my Jake. He's already done the worst he could do to me."

Jake Kelly's remains were cremated and are in her possession. She explained that one of her other sons also died young and wanted his ashes transported to Costa Rica, where she had taken her boys to Tamarindo, a popular surfing destination.

"Jake's little brother died and wanted his ashes spread in Costa Rica," she said. "I'm thinking if I get the chance to do that, I'll take Jake, too."
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