Day 2 in Barnum case includes family testimonies about additional shooting

By Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat
First Assistant Grayson County District Attorney Kerye Ashmore arrives for the second day of the Timothy Barnum trial Wednesday.

Testimony continued Wednesday in the trial of Timothy Barnum who faces a murder charge in the October 2017 shooting death of Robert Allen at Allen Plumbing in Denison.

Barnum has pleaded not guilty.

On Tuesday afternoon, Assistant Grayson County District Attorney Kerye Ashmore questioned a woman named Stephanie Hollingsworth about her relationship with Timothy Barnum in August of 2016. Ashmore told jurors in his opening statement that they are sure Timothy Barnum is responsible for Allen’s death because forensic evidence shows Allen was shot with the same gun used in a shooting that involved both Timothy Barnum and his dad in August of 2016.

Hollingsworth was at Timothy Barnum’s home on the night of that alleged shooting incident between father and son, Ashmore said.

She testified that on the day of the shooting Timothy Barnum had been acting strange by coming and going a lot and sitting across the street watching the house. She said he was having a fight with his father and at one point later in the evening he came in and stretched out on the bed next to her in his street clothes and shoes. She said he stayed there a while but didn’t go to sleep. Then, a car pulled into the drive and he got up and ran outside with a gun. About 20 minutes later, she said heard gunshots. She didn’t see the shooting or who was shot, she testified.

Ashmore then spent some time going over the testimony she had given to the grand jury about exactly what the gun she saw Timothy Barnum with looked like. Her story had changed from the gun having a clip when she talked to the grand jury to it being a revolver when she testified in court. She said she didn’t know a lot about guns.

Assistant GC District Attorney Nathan Young arrives for the second day of testimony in the Timothy Barnum murder trial Wednesday at the Grayson County Courthouse.

Timothy Barnum’s attorney Laura Andrade asked about the change in testimony, too. Hollingsworth stuck with her assertion that the gun she saw had been a revolver. She also agreed with Andrade that she never saw Timothy Barnum shoot anyone that night.

Hollingsworth said she left Timothy Barnum that night and had never been back. She also said when she asked him about the shooting, he told her not to worry about it which was not unusual for him.

Ashmore continued that line of questioning Wednesday when he asked Barnum’s sister-in-law Toni Barnum and his brother Kelvon Barnum about being on the phone with Hollingsworth when the shooting happened. Toni Barnum said she was on the phone with her brother-in-law’s girlfriend for several hours that night because the woman was upset about the fight Timothy Barnum was having with his father. Toni Barnum said at some point in the conversation, Hollingsworth said Timothy Barnum had gone outside with a gun. Toni Barnum said she walked into the other room where Kelvon Barnum was and asked him to get his father, Herman Barnum on the phone to talk him out of going to Tim Barnum’s house.

Toni Barnum said while they were on the phone listening, she and her husband both heard gunshots. Toni Barnum said while she stayed on the phone with Hollingsworth, her husband tried to get his father on the phone. The dad eventually called Kelvon Barnum, and he later testified that he didn’t ask about the shooting because he just didn’t want to get involved.

Ashmore asked Toni Barnum if she had been talking to Denison police about her brother-in-law without giving her name after Robert Allen was killed and she said she had. She said she talked to them about the shooting that had happened in 2016 with the father.

Under questions from Ashmore, she said she didn’t want to be in court talking about any of that and had come only because she had been required to do so. She then testified about a phone call she overheard between her husband and his brother Timothy Barnum in which Timothy Barnum talked about praying to God about Amanda Allen. In that conversation, Toni Barnum heard Timothy Barnum say something along the lines of “if Amanda keeps (screwing) with me ... I am going to pray about it again and if God told him to he would do what he had already done,” indicating the killing of Robert Allen.

Amanda Allen was Robert Allen’s daughter and prosecutors contend that Barnum killed or hired the killing of Robert Allen to get him to stop pushing Amanda Allen to testify against Tim Barnum on domestic abuse cases that were pending in 2017.

Wednesday, Andrade asked Toni and Kelvon Barnum if they had been at Timothy Barnum’s house on the night of the alleged shooting incident with his father and saw what happened and both said they had not.They also both said they didn’t see what happened on October 31, 2017 at Allen’s Plumbing in Denison.

One of the last witnesses to talk about the shooting of Herman Barnum was former Durant Detective Buddy Faulkner who testified he was called to the hospital in August of 2016 about a shooting incident. When he got there, he met with Herman Barnum and Tyrone Sommers. Herman Barnum had been shot in the hip and the bullet was still lodged there when the two talked. Faulkner said Herman Barnum was not interested in helping in the investigation at all and just wanted to leave the hospital. Faulkner said Herman Barnum said he and Sommers had been driving in the southbound lane of U.S. Highway 75 in Durant near the Choctaw Casino when some guys pulled up next to them and started yelling obscenities. Herman Barnum told Faulkner that eventually, the guys started shooting at them.

Faulkner said the story Herman Barnum gave him didn’t make any sense. None the less, Faulkner took the car the two were in back to the Durant Police Department where it was photographed and searched. Inside the car, he found and retrieved a bullet.

During his opening argument on Tuesday, Ashmore said that bullet led back to the gun used to kill Robert Allen.

Faulkner also found a gun inside the mustang that Herman Barnum was in when he arrived at the hospital in Durant, but it turned out to be a BB gun which had been modified to look like a real gun.

Faulkner said Herman Barnum said he took the orange coloring off the BB gun to make the youngsters think it was real.

Testimony in the case continued Wednesday afternoon.