Clean shoes, holes in story made David Dooley stand out in homicide investigation, detective says

Posted at 12:15 PM, Mar 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-05 17:35:46-05

BURLINGTON, Ky. — Something about David Dooley stuck out to investigators working the scene of Michelle Mockbee's homicide, the lead detective on the case said.

Bruce McVay, a retired Boone County Sheriff's Office detective, testified Tuesday in Dooley's retrial for Mockbee's death. He described interviewing Mockbee's coworkers at Thermo Fisher Scientific, looking for clues like torn clothes or blood. He didn't see anything on anybody.

However, there was some confusion with Dooley, McVay said. He thought Dooley was the janitor supervisor. McVay said he found Dooley's appearance unusual.

"He was clean, he had clean, white shoes and the place was filthy, so that was an observation to me," McVay said.

Earlier in the trial, one of their other coworkers also testified about how unusually clean Dooley's shoes were that morning.

Dooley told investigators that he had emptied an upstairs garbage can, but McVay said it wasn't true and detectives found garbage there. The detectives took four items from the second floor in their search for the murder weapon.

Then there was the security video that showed Dooley's truck leaving the facility after investigators believe Mockbee had been killed. McVay said Dooley never told detectives that he'd left.

"This was pretty interesting to us, so we decided to go back and re-interview him," McVay said.

Prosecutors say Dooley is the only one who left the facility that morning. That's important because the murder weapon has never been found.

Dooley then told investigators that he'd gone home to check on his wife. But she told investigators in an interview that he never came home.

"Why would her story be different?" McVay asked Dooley in a recorded interview.

"She wasn't with me that day, so she doesn't know," Dooley said.

"But she said you didn't come home."

"I don't know," Dooley said. "She said I did not come home?"


"Well that's night right, because I did go home," Dooley said.

Dooley said his wife has trouble hearing, and that may have played a role. It's why he said he was worried about her, too, because she wasn't answering her phone.

Dooley would eventually be convicted of killing Mockbee, but that was later overturned after Dooley's defense team said they had not been given some surveillance video evidence. He is now on trial for the second time, still charged with murder in her death.

Friend testifies about $10K payment

Earlier Tuesday, jurors in the retrial heard from the man Dooley's defense team once suggested could have been paid to kill Mockbee.

Chris Black is best friends with Mockbee's husband, Dan Mockbee. He gave Black $10,000 after the murder. Black told the jury Tuesday that it was because he and his wife were on the edge of foreclosure. His wife asked Dan Mockbee for the money, but they ultimately filed bankruptcy.

Dooley's defense team has tried to offer other people as suspects in Michelle Mockbee's death. Last week, defense attorney Deanna Dennison questioned Dan Mockbee about life insurance money he received after his wife's death, and asked whether he hired someone to kill her.

"Absolutely not," Dan Mockee said.

Tuesday, Black said he had never been questioned about that money as it relates to this case until he was subpoenaed Saturday. He testified that he had nothing to do with the planning or execution of Michelle Mockbee's murder.

Prosecutors have said Dooley killed Mockbee because she caught him triple dipping time cards at Thermo Fisher Scientific, where they both worked.

There was a short delay on the case early Tuesday morning. Black's wife, Marta, also testified about the money they received. She mentioned Dooley's first trial, prompting the defense to file for a mistrial. Judge James Schrand denied the motion.

The trial will continue Wednesday.