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8/26/2011 6:01:00 AM
Suspect in 2010 slaying in custody
Fessenden, Corley in on plot to kill Gillespie, Sheriff's Office says
Casey Fessenden
Casey Fessenden
Christopher Gillespie
Christopher Gillespie

KINGMAN - The Mohave County Sheriff's Office announced an arrest in the year-old murder investigation of a 37-year-old Kingman man while a second suspect is still outstanding.

Casey Fessenden, 38, was arrested on first-degree murder charges and conspiracy to commit murder in connection with the death of Christopher Gillespie.

Gillespie was shot to death some time before 9 p.m. April 12, 2010, in the desert off of Old Trails Road near the second black railroad bridge. Old Trails Road runs parallel to the portion of Historic Route 66 that breaks off at Andy Devine Avenue and Beale Street.

Gillespie was lured out to the location by Norman R. Corley, 36, on the premise of going out to the desert to look for money and bottles.

Sheriff Tom Sheahan said Fessenden was lying in wait for Gillespie. After Gillespie got out of the vehicle and entered the light from the pickup truck's headlights, he was shot four times in the neck and back.

Sheahan said that at least one of those four shots came from Corley. The others were from a .223 caliber rifle that Fessenden reported stolen the day after the murder, when in fact he had sold it to another individual.

That person, who had no knowledge of the murder, Sheahan said, never used the rifle, leaving the evidence leading to Fessenden's arrest intact.

"We had our suspicions from the beginning, but as it went on, we had to get solid physical evidence," he said. "That firearm was the evidence we needed."

A girlfriend who accompanied Gillespie to the location and saw her boyfriend shot was said not to have anything to do with the murder, which Sheahan said was financially motivated.

Authorities are actively looking for Corley, who also faces first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder charges. No picture of him was available.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Article comment by: Eve Cragen

Rest in peace Chris, you were a good man.

Posted: Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Article comment by: Sherry Stone

Is this guy ever going to have his day in court? Or are we just going to pay for him to sit in jail and his lawyers do a paper shuffle?

Posted: Friday, May 4, 2012
Article comment by: Old Man RAINES

How can you say he "fully co-operated", he reported his gun stolen (the following day). All the well knowing, he had sold it? What would be his gain? Hmmm, "Insurance claim" UMMM, Ya RIGHT... Or A DUMB COVER-UP!!

Posted: Sunday, October 30, 2011
Article comment by: Zell Henderson

With the arrest of Norm Corley we add to the ever increasing list of families impacted by this senseless tragedy. The arrest does not bring Chris back to life, He is not going to walk through the door, smiling, with a load of wood in his arms. He was raised to never come in the house without an armful. Chris is unable to smile across the room at his family, giving them hope that this nightmare could end with his release. The holidays will come and go without word from Chris to his mother, her only child. His children will mourn him and miss him at graduation, weddings, their lives have been altered forever. His wife trying to be father and mother,work full time, house, comfort, feed their babies, re-invent family and mourn. His grandmother remembering the summers of his youth, her precious child unable to frolic at the sea side with her and his loved ones, ever again. Chris has a great number of friends who will carry him in their hearts for eternity. We recognize we are not alone in our grief, we have been joined by yet another family. Words will not salve the broken hearts, we will need Gods help with that. Our prayers are for all, in this way we honor the son, husband, father, friend we have lost. We wish you Peace and Love Chris.

Posted: Friday, September 2, 2011
Article comment by: B H

This should be a death penalty case for sure

Posted: Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Article comment by: R .

By looking at the picture, Mr Fessenden doesn't look like he's lived a clean life as some people here seem to want us to believe. He's 38, he looks like he's 60.

Posted: Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Article comment by: ss dd

Norman Roger Corley Jr: Last seen in the areas of Queen Creek, Apache Junction and Scotsdale,AZ. He works as a mobile tatooist out of people's homes, his business is called Forbidden Ink. He's 6'0, 185lbs, brown eyes and a receding hairline of brown hair. His teeth are missing but may have dentures by now and he has two scorpions tatooed on his chest, one yellow, one blue.

Posted: Monday, August 29, 2011
Article comment by: Sheri Crook

Casey has always been a follower, and I am sure that is the case here.. he followed. I am sure he cooperated with the police, but there is a lot of weird tid bits surrounding this case.. Why did he report a gun, he sold, as stolen?? there's a lot of other little things, that aren't in the paper and not fair for me to disclose, but they will come to light, this will be public record. And Yes, the company he kept does say a lot about him that is dead on correct.. and he is paying for it now in a huge sad way.
Family and friends will defend him with all they have and it's as it should be... I am neither, but I do know Casey, actually know him quite well, and sadly, he lacks in his use of good old fashion commen sense.

Posted: Sunday, August 28, 2011
Article comment by: WOW a new low

Ever heard the expression "You can tell alot about a person by the company he keeps."?
Missing something is saying alot about the character of the people Casey associated with. IT IS NOT GOOD!!!!

Posted: Sunday, August 28, 2011
Article comment by: Missing something

What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty? I have known Casey since he was little. Mouthy? yes. Cold blooded killer? NO. Drug dealer? Never happen. The "girlfriend had nothing to do with it" give me a break. Maybe it "was an honest mistake" on her part? and my condolences to the victims family, However, if drugs were involved, then he was not innocent himself. How about we crucify him as well as the so called "suspect".

Posted: Sunday, August 28, 2011
Article comment by: Where are your Manners??

@ sun flower & doesn't add up,
I will take the risk of assuming you are family?friends? of Casey. It is certainly undrstandable that this would be hard on you, But what about the family/friends of Mr. Gillespe? You did not make one mention of compassion for their loss!!!
Casey has not been convicted yet and there is certainly more to the whole thing than what is in the paper. There is no shame in defending your loved one, but I find it flat out rude that you can not offer a kind word for the loss of LIFE ( no matter who may be responsible)

Posted: Sunday, August 28, 2011
Article comment by: Doesn't Add Up

First of all...I think there are some serious flaws in this case.

Casey is not a drug dealer, Casey has not ever been into drugs, Casey has a clean record, and worked hard just like anyone else in Kingman who lost construction jobs, and offered to help Norman with some temporary roofing work when all this apparently took place.

The word on the street is that Casey's rifle was stolen out of his truck at the job site. Casey reported it missing promptly, other than being burned by a friend which is probably the case here, CASEY IS NO KILLER!

I seriously doubt he allegedly laid in wait to murder someone he barely knew if at all, ever knew. Secondly, Casey did cooperate with the Sheriffs for over a year freely they took his computer, financial records, and everything. Lastly, anyone that knows Casey, would have to say this is absurd, because NOBODY is dumb enough to use his own registered rifle/weapon to shoot another person in cold blood, and then supposedly play dumb - and Casey is no stupid guy.

So really, where is the case here? Where is the motive? How did Casey gain from this? The Sheriff Office says his weapon was linked to the killing, but that does not mean he was the one who did it. Casey surely wasn't sporting around riches for a drug deal killing gone bad as they say this whole case stinks with false accusation/scapegoat blame on the wrong person.

Hopefully the courts with straighten this mess out, because Casey has children, family, and friends in Kingman for a lifetime, and nobody believes for one minute he killed anyone!

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: The Flower

Casey has never been into drugs?? Ummm you don't know him that well then. I feel badly for his family, but not as bad as I feel for the family who had their son, father, friend killed.

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: R .

Here's an idiot who doesn't want to suffer a financial loss by destroying the firearm he used in a killing, so he sells it and reports it stolen! I'm forever amazed by stupidity!

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: June Pleis

In response to Sun Flowers comments - just remember that my grandson, Chris, left behind 3 (three) beautiful children also. This was a senseless killing. About time justice is served.

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: Moon Flower

First off, if they are teenage childern in this town, odds are they are not reading this

Maybe we will do what we want and decide if on our own.

1. Good that he is co-operating with them so the sentence will be lower

2. America's dumbest criminals move.

3. There is a first for everything and if he was associatiing with Norman that's a pretty good indication to watch him.

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: v smith

Knowing the fessenden family has been a pleasure and my heart goes out to them during this time and also to the family of christopher gillespie. casey made a huge mistake that will impact the lives of everyone involved and he will pay for it for the rest of his life as well as his family. also to m m I highly doubt it was a drug deal.

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: Sun Flower

First off, PLEASE have some consideration when posting, Casey has teenage children who could be reading these. Remember, THEY are not to ones who should have to be mentally tormented for others inabilities!

Maybe everyone should wait to convict him until he is convicted! The miner has only published 1 side of the story... on a year old case they want to solve.

1. Casey has FULLY Co-operated with the police from day one. Has given them everything they wanted and answered everything he has been asked.

2. Casey WILLINGLY left work on his own accord during his lunch time to go down to the police station and give his prints to them... That was when they took him into custody.

3. Casey has no prior issues and has never been into drugs or dealing, anyone who knows him KNOWS this for fact... Norman Corley on the other hand is known around town for dealing and using. AND... HE IS THE ONE WHO HAS BEEN ON THE RUN!!!!

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: m m

hmm sounds like a drug deal gone bad

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: paula dreyer

If anyone wants to see a picture of Norman Corely, check facebook.

Posted: Friday, August 26, 2011
Article comment by: Jane Smith

I really hope that the Sherriff's office not only arrest Norm Corely but both of these wastes of skin get what they deserve.

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