Saline County District Court was in the middle of testimony June 24 when defendant Aubrey Trail disrupted the proceedings and tried to harm himself around 11:30 a.m.
Trail shouted, “Bailey is innocent, and I curse you all,” and then slashed his neck with an unknown sharp object.
A short time after, he was loaded into an ambulance with a bandage around his neck and taken to a hospital.
Judge Vicky Johnson ordered the courtroom to clear out, reconvening at 2 p.m., when she then dismissed court for the rest of the day, instructing jurors to disregard the outburst and to not read or listen to anything about the case outside of the courtroom or discuss the case with anyone.
Johnson and members of both the prosecution and defense were to speak with each juror individually.
Trail received stitches and was expected to be back in court on Tuesday—this time in handcuffs—however, he was not in court on Tuesday morning. No reason was given for his absence.
The murder trial for Trail began with opening statements June 18 in Saline County District Court in Wilber.
Trail, along with girlfriend Bailey Boswell, has been charged with first degree murder in the death of Lincoln woman Sydney Loofe in November 2017.
After a postponement to the following day because of undisclosed issues regarding the jury and Trail’s absence in court, proceedings began June 20 with testimony from Loofe’s mother, Susan, on behalf of the state.
Susan recounted the week leading up to her daughter’s disappearance and was asked by the state
about Sydney’s employment and living situation.
After learning her daughter was missing on Nov. 16, Susan said she knew something was wrong when she and her husband, George, visited Sydney’s apartment the next day and saw that her cat was left unattended.
“She would never do that,” Loofe said.
Brooklyn McCrystal, Sydney’s friend and co-worker at Menards, testified June 20 that she tried to contact Sydney after hearing she was missing.
McCrystal, who knew of Loofe’s Nov. 14 Tinder date with a girl named Audrey, then set up a fake Tinder account to try to find Audrey and communicate with her. Audrey was confirmed in court to be Boswell.
McCrystal eventually was able to get through, and after receiving information from Audrey, shared it with the Loofe family and the Lincoln Police.
Saline County Sheriff’s Deputy Tom Hudiburgh took the stand June 21.
Hudiburgh became involved with the case Nov. 18 during a search for Sydney. He was one of the first people to enter a residence owned by Alan and Jennifer Koll to search for any sign of Sydney.
Hudiburgh detailed his involvement, which also included a search at Turkey Creek in Saline County and at the Milford landfill for any sign or evidence of Sydney’s possible whereabouts.
“We were directed to the ‘Wilber’ section and started looking there,” Hudiburgh said.
Both landlords of the apartment Trail and Boswell were living in, located at 622 A West Seventh Street in Wilber, took the stand.
Alan Koll recounted how Boswell and Trail seemed as tenants, saying he didn’t see or interact with them often. He was also asked to describe the layout of the apartment in question and about events leading up to Sydney’s disappearance.
“My wife texted me and said she smelled a strong odor of bleach,” Koll said in regard to Nov. 16. “It was faint but noticeable.”
Koll’s wife, Jennifer, also took the stand and detailed Nov. 16, the day she smelled bleach from the downstairs apartment.
“I’m allergic to bleach so we never have it in the house,” Jennifer Koll said.
She said she last saw Boswell Nov. 15 with a female who she believed to be Sydney.
The state then called Nebraska State Patrol Investigator Pedro Nabegh to recount his involvement. He also searched the apartment and was presented with the photos he had taken of the apartment, walking the court through the law enforcement process.
“You’re looking for proof of a person’s presence or evidence of a timeline,” Nabegh said.
Prosecutors then brought out three bleach bottles that were seized at the scene as well as a cutout of bedding that was in the home at the time. Nabegh said a matching bedsheet was found in Clay County, where Sydney’s body was found.
Trail’s trial is scheduled to continue over the next few weeks.