Trial set for Jeff West in 2018 death of wife Kat West

Published 8:37 am Thursday, August 13, 2020

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By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor

A trial date has been set for the husband of a Calera woman who was killed more than two years ago outside of the couple’s home.

Shelby County Circuit Judge William Bostick set the trial to begin Monday, Sept. 14, for Jeff West, who is accused of murdering his wife on Jan. 12, 2018.

According to court records filed on Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, Jeff West is accused of using a bottle of Lucid Absinthe to kill his wife Kathleen West, who was 42 years old at the time.

Jeff West

Calera Police Chief Sean Lemley said 44-year-old Jeff West was a suspect in his wife’s murder from the very beginning, but evidence was needed to support suspicions.

After receiving the evidence needed, an arrest warrant was issued and Lemley felt confident in saying they knew exactly what happened the night of the murder.

Jeff West was arrested on Thursday morning, Feb. 22, 2018, around 8:15, just more than a month after his wife’s body was found halfway on the street and in the yard of a neighbor’s house at 5 a.m. on Jan. 12 on the 100 block of Greenwood Circle.

West has been held at the Shelby County Jail since on bonds totaling $500,000, while he still maintains his innocence.

The cause of her death was blunt force trauma to the head and she was pronounced dead at the scene, but the motive has not been disclosed.

From his knowledge, Lemley said in 2018 that Jeff West was aware of his wife’s activity on an adult website that sold photos of herself, charging $15.99 per month for access. Her Twitter profile, which is listed under the handle of “kittykatwest75,” included revealing photos of her and provided a link to the adult website.

A pretrial conference is scheduled for Aug. 21, while a backup trial date is set for Oct. 19. The order scheduling the trial also said the Shelby County Commission has designated the Shelby County Arts Center in Columbiana for jury selection to help social distance.

The trial itself will take place in the courthouse with social distancing in the juror box, while it will also live stream the public proceedings to other spaces not in the courtroom.