Murder and Robbery Suspect of Elderly Man Pleads No Contest

Local murder defendant Dawn Ruthann Ross pleaded no contest to second-degree murder and robbery Friday and faces a sentence of 40 years in prison.

27 year old Ross agreed to testify when Assistant State Attorney Larry Basford takes her co-defendant Judy Lynn Gsell to trial December third.

Ross and 48 year old Gsell were indicted on charges of first-degree felony murder and robbery. They’re accused of strangling to death Gsell’s husband Raymond Harvey Gsell on January 20th, robbing him and hiding his body in a freezer.

Ross’s sentence was put off until after Gsell’s trial. Gsell faces up to life in prison if convicted as charged.

Basford told Circuit Judge Elijah Smiley that Raymond Gsell’s son Martin had approved, and BCSO case agent Andy Husar was in court in support of the plea agreement.

Also on Friday, the reports of three psychologists who examined Judy Gsell for her mental competency to proceed to trial were given to Smiley for review. Two of the three found Gsell competent.

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