Man charged with mur­der

The Phoenix - - FRONT PAGE - By Fran Maye [email protected]­tu­ry­

A 53-year-old East Pikeland man has been ar­rested and charged with beat­ing and killing his girl­friend af­ter he ac­cused her of cheat­ing on him.

Mark Turner, who works as a handy­man and lives at 31 B Ridge Road, was charged with first-de­gree mur­der of his girl­friend, Rachel Yea­ger.

“This was a bru­tal killing,” said Ch­ester County Dis­trict At­tor­ney Tom Ho­gan. “The de­fen­dant does not ap­pear to un­der­stand that his girl­friend was not his prop­erty. She was a hu­man be­ing, free to make her own choices, but the de­fen­dant de­stroyed her.”

Ho­gan said on Nov. 1, Turner went to work wear­ing work clothes and steel-toed work boots. He had a cou­ple of drinks at a Phoenixville bar and more at a bar in Oaks, and re­turned home with a quart of beer around 11 p.m.

When Turner walked in, Yea­ger was sit­ting on a couch wear­ing only Turner’s robe and a shirt. Turner went up­stairs to go to bed, but no­ticed a wet spot, and sus­pected Yea­ger of cheat­ing on him with an­other man. He re­turned down­stairs en­raged, Ho­gan said.

Turner punched Yea­ger in her head with a closed fist re­peat­edly, hit her on both sides of her jaw, and used his steel-toed work books to kick her in the vaginal area mul­ti­ple times.

East Pikeland Po­lice re­sponded to a 911 re­port of a do­mes­tic dis­tur­bance, and found Yea­ger un­re­spon­sive on the couch. She was trans­ported to Phoenixville Hos­pi­tal, then to the trauma cen­ter at Paoli Hos­pi­tal, where she lin­gered on life sup­port for some time, but died at ap­prox­i­mately 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 2.

The au­topsy re­vealed that Yea­ger died of blunt im­pact in­juries to her head. She had sig­nif­i­cant bruis­ing on the left side of her head, from chin to tem­ple, as well as across her gen­i­tal area. There was red bruis­ing and scrapes on her left hip, left thigh and an­kle. There were bruises on both of her knees. Yea­ger’s right hand had sig­nifi-

cant, dark bruis­ing, of­fi­cials said.

“It is not easy to kill some­body with just your fists and feet,” Ho­gan said. “But the de­fen­dant was de­ter­mined to kill the vic­tim. This is the ugly face of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence.’’

Turner has been charged with first-de­gree mur­der and re­lated of­fenses, and re­mains in Ch­ester County Prison with no bail.

Ch­ester County De­tec­tive John O’Don­nell is the lead in­ves­ti­ga­tor on the case. The pros­e­cu­tors are Deputy Dis­trict At­tor­ney Michelle Frei and As­sis­tant Dis­trict At­tor­ney Ty Broder­son. Any­body with any in­for­ma­tion should call De­tec­tive O’Don­nell at (610) 344-6866.

Mark Turner

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