Woman arrested in connection with deadly Columbia home invasion

1 month 1 week 6 days ago Friday, February 21 2020 Feb 21, 2020 Friday, February 21, 2020 2:17:52 PM CST February 21, 2020

COLUMBIA —Columbia police arrested Gracie Avery, 20, on charges of second degree murder just before 7 p.m. Friday. 

Prosecutors charged a woman with murder Friday in connection with a deadly home invasion and shooting in early February.

Avery, 20, is charged with second-degree murder due to the death of Joseph Taylor, 17, during a robbery attempt. Court documents said Avery was a participant in the attempted robbery.

The incident happened on February 5 when a homeowner on Doris Drive said two men broke into his home. The owner said when the suspects set down their guns, he picked one up and shot one of the invaders, which police identified as Taylor.

During the investigation, police learned Avery helped set up a drug deal at the home where the robbery happened. The probable cause statement said she later drove the surviving suspect of the home invasion from the scene. One witness said Avery set up the drug deal knowing it would become a robbery attempt.

Police said surveillance video showed Avery and the other suspect getting out an SUV matching the one connected to the home invasion scene.

Avery's bond has been set at $500,000 cash only. 

Columbia, MO
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