Joshua Fairley

I actually looked into this case sometime last year when it was back in the news and seemingly found more information than I was able to find this time which seems very odd to me. Like many cases on the surface this seems rather cut and dry, but like so many others looks can be deceiving. I recall some of the information on this case that I was unable to find but not everything so I plan to put this together with the research that I obtained recently and discuss the other issues at the end.

On June 24, 2010 at about 5pm the Evansville Police Department received a call from a man who had gone to a home, looked in the windows and saw a young girl laying in a pool of blood. Once inside authorities would find the body of sixteen year old Haley Green. She had a gunshot wound to the top right side of her head. There was a sword, still in it's sheath lying in her lap. Blood was on the handle but my information stated that the blood was not tested. As police moved through the home they would find thirty year old Joshua Fairley in the bathroom of the home. He took suffered from a gunshot wound to the head. His appeared to be self inflicted.

Fairley was taken to a local hospital and then air lifted to a hospital in Indianapolis where he would spend the next six weeks while the investigation began.

Research indicates that neither Haley or Joshua lived in the Evansville home, at least not officially. Haley actually lived in Mount Vernon, a small town west of Evansville. As far as Fairley it is unclear. Most information indicated that this house was his residence but then there were others that said he also did not technically live there. Family members were confused as to why Haley was there to begin with. They stated that Haley's aunt and her boyfriend, Jeff Phillips (he was the man who had called authorities) knew Fairley but as far as they were aware Haley did not.

Once Fairley was able to speak he would say that he recalled very little but that he did remember that he was in the home with another female when Haley had come there. According to Fairley she had been very upset to find him with someone else and that the last thing he remembered was holding her down to allow the other female time to get out. The other female was located and she apparently confirmed that part of the story. Fairley claims that he remembers nothing after that. While some would argue that it was convenient that Fairley remembered nothing else one also has to remember that he did suffer a head injury. He had apparently placed the gun under his chin and pulled the trigger. There was an exit would to the top of his head, so his head injury was legitimate, hence his memory lapse could also be.

The only true forensics that I found that were taken in the home indicated that Haley's fingerprints were found on a broken window in the bedroom of the home.

Fairley was charged with murder in August, upon his release from the hospital. According to Haley's family there seemed to be a lot of unanswered questions and while a trial would have been painful they in fact wanted one so that many things could have been answered. Instead Fairley would plead guilty and in March of 2011 he was given a sentence of fifty years. According to the Department of Corrections website he is not eligible for parole until the year 2034. However in 2016 he appealed his conviction asking for a new trial. At this point Haley's family members are less willing to open that wound saying they wanted a trial in 2010 and Fairley did not and they do not think he deserves one now. Fairley's argument was that his head injury left him in a state of mind in which he should not have been able to accept or understand a plea agreement. Another question behind that is that his attorney at the time of his plea was Dennis Vowels. I spoke of Vowels earlier in a blog about Vincent Prowell who had won the right to a new trial based on the ineffective counsel that Vowels had offered. While there did not seem to be quite the same argument here there did seem to be issues since Vowels currently (or at least by the time Fairley was asking for a new trial) working for the Vanderburgh County Prosecutors Office. It leaves a question as to which side he was on when he was a criminal defense attorney. To be fair to Vowels in a sense though I have to say that I personally would not make a good defense attorney in cases of guilty clients, although I do believe I would still be able to do what was fair and just for a client. The last that I could find was that the courts had said there would likely not be a decision on the appeal for several months but they indicated that it would come before the end of 2016 and I found nothing on that.

I tried doing an extensive search on Haley's father, Jeff, because he has made claims against the Evansville Police Department claiming a cover up in this case. He argues that a police officer was standing outside the home when his daughter was killed inside. As I stated earlier I was unable to find a lot on this now but just a few years ago I was hearing things about this. I do not remember, nor can I find the specifics on his claim but I welcome any feedback on that. If his claims are true it would appear the facts as I have later found them may be skewed.  


  1. Did he ever get a new trial? I would really like to know this.


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