Morris Brickle Hicks, of Bismarck, is accused of murdering 40-year-old Misty Coffelt.
Police responded to reports of an unresponsive woman around 9am on April 14th, 2016 behind Runnings in South Bismarck. Brickle Hicks was arrested shortly after. The trial began this morning at the Burleigh County Courthouse.
Opening statements began around 1:30. With seven witnesses taking the stand throughout the course of the day.
Brickle-Hicks’ defense attorney admits his defendant was in an altercation with the victim, Misty Coffelt the night of her murder. However, his attorney says he was not in a culpable state of mind -claiming he didn’t knowingly or intentionally kill her. Those that took the stand included Bismarck Police department detectives, the 911 dispatcher, and the man who found Coffelt’s body the next morning. He explained the scene in gruesome detail.
“She was laying on her side. Her face was beat in really bad. You could see parts of that skeleton coming through her face. There was blood by her head, and the pallet she was close to had blood running down the side of the pallet,” said Tom Dillmann.
Coffelt’s family was there throughout today’s trial. It’s scheduled to continue until Friday. If convicted, Brickle Hicks faces life in prison.