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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

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Former Stony Brook women’s soccer player arrested on murder charges

Norwood during her time as a defender at Stony Brook University. (Photo from GoSeawolves.org)

A former Stony Brook University women’s soccer star has been charged with murdering a co-worker in a suburb of Washington, D.C., according to reports.

Brittany Norwood, 28, faces first-degree murder charges. She was a student-athlete at Stony Brook from 2001-2004, Seawolves director of communications Thomas Chen said via email on Monday.

Chen said that the athletics department, including women’s soccer head coach Sue Ryan, who was the coach when Norwood played, has decided to not comment on the situation beyond confirming that Norwood did play at Stony Brook.

Norwood’s athletics profile was removed from the Stony Brook athletics website by Monday afternoon, but past releases indicate that she was a key player, earning all-conference and all-region accolades during her tenure as a defender for the Seawolves.

Norwood was arrested last Friday, a week after police in Bethesda, Md., say she killed a co-worker in their workplace, a yoga shop in an upscale neighborhood.

On March 12, Norwood told police that both she and Jayna Murray, 30, had been attacked and sexually assaulted in the Lululeman Athletica store where they worked.

But six days later, police arrested Norwood, saying that she stabbed Murray to death. After beating Murray, Norwood had then posed with her hands tied above her head and self-inflicted wounds to cover up the slaying. Norwood cut a hole in Murray’s pants to create an illusion of sexual assault, walked around the store in size 14 men’s shoes to leave bloody footprints and used zip ties to bind herself, according to newspaper reports.

No evidence of sexual assault was discovered on either woman.

In a court hearing on Monday, prosecutors hinted that Norwood may have used tools from inside the store to beat Murray over the head, striking her too many times to count, according to reports. Murray’s skull was fractured and her spinal cord was severed.

Prosecutors believe that Murray discovered stolen merchandise from the store in Norwood’s bag on the day of the murder and reported her findings to the store manager, causing the altercation.

In several interviews, a former Stony Brook University teammate of Norwood’s indicated that Norwood had stolen items from her, causing her to quit the team.

Norwood was ordered to be held without bond on Monday. Prosecutors told Bethesda newspapers Norwood would not be eligible for the death penalty if convicted due to strict Maryland law that governs capital punishment. A preliminary hearing is set for April 15.

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