KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
August 06, 2019
By Jennifer Miko
The jury deliberated for about eight hours. The verdict – guilty. David Temple, was being retried for the murder of his wife Belinda. The incident took place in their Katy home, 20 years ago. She was eight months pregnant at the time.
In January, 1999, Belinda Temple was shot in the back of the head in her Katy home. The former Katy High School teacher was found in her master bedroom closet. Her unborn child did not survive.
Building the Case
David Temple told investigators that his wife Belinda was shot during a home invasion. His defense team pointed at Riley Joe Sanders, a teenage neighbor, as the killer. Sanders apparently held a grudge against Belinda for telling his parents he had repeatedly skipped school.
Investigators pieced together Temple's timeline around the time of the shooting, including his errands with his young son through the 911 calls. The murder weapon was never found, and investigators were unable to establish that Temple owned or had access to a 12-gauge shotgun.
On Trial for Murder
After further investigation, Temple was indicted for his wife's murder in 2004. The evidence presented at Temple’s trial removed suspicion from the neighbor, Sanders. The prosecutor, Kelly Siegler, argued there were holes in Temple’s alibi, and that the former head coach at Alief Hastings High School, wanted out of his marriage. Siegler suggested Temple wanted to be with Heather Scott, with whom he was having an affair at the time.
A Harris Country jury found Temple guilty in 2007. He then served nine years in prison. However, an appeals court overturned the conviction citing Siegler withheld evidence from the defense.
Temple, now 51, has been out on bond since December 2016.
Back in Court
On July 8, Temple’s retrial began. Four days later, Temple’s wife Heather (whom he married two years after Belinda’s death) made a stunning announcement. She filed for a divorce from Temple.
For 18 days, the jury listened to witness testimony, and both sides presenting their case. In the closing arguments, the defense argued that investigators didn’t properly investigate the teenage neighbor, and that Temple was out with the couple’s three-year-old at the time of the murder. The jury would need to believe all evidence presented without a reasonable doubt.
The new prosecutor told the jury the break-in details on the day of the shooting appeared staged. The prosecution pointed out that nothing was stolen, and the family’s dog didn’t prevent the intruder from entering the home. The prosecution also suggested there was a 20-minute gap in Temple’s alibi where he could have committed the crime.
20 years after Belinda and her unborn child were killed, and an 18-day retrial, the jury took eight hours to reach a verdict. They found Temple guilty of murdering his pregnant wife in their Katy home, and that he should return to prison.