Court: Jealousy sparked fatal assault on mother of three

The brutality that ended with Caneya "Candy" Webb's fatal strangulation in June 2013 began with boyfriend Curtis Durall Newsome's checking her cellphone while she was in the shower of her Edmond Estates apartment in Phenix City, according to testimony Wednesday in Newsome's murder trial.

What he found on the phone made him jealous, authorities said.

The jury Wednesday heard evidence of what Newsome told investigators the night of June 28 and early morning hours of June 29, 2013, as they questioned him in LaGrange, Ga., where he had been arrested for driving while his license was suspended.

A Troup County deputy had stopped Newsome for driving Webb's red Ford Explorer too slowly in the northbound passing lane of Interstate 85. That was around 6:15 a.m. that Friday, June 28, about six hours before Webb's body was found in Phenix City.

With a warrant for Newsome's arrest, Phenix City police detectives traveled to Troup County that night to question the suspect, who cooperated in confessing he'd killed Webb and told them what had ensued, they said.

Newsome told police that while Webb was taking a shower, he checked her texts and social media posts, which led him to suspect she had another lover. When she came out of the shower, he confronted her, he told investigators.

So began the violent assault in Web's apartment, which police later found in disarray, with picture frames shattered, furniture damaged and a TV control box on the floor. Newsome told police of striking and choking Web, and tying her hands and feet with computer cord before he locked her apartment and left in her Ford.

After Newsome's interview that Friday night, detectives returned to Webb's apartment the following Monday, July 1, and found blood smears where Newsome had told them he and Webb fought, including one on a bedroom wall and another on a comforter on the bed.

Though Newsome was jailed soon after his girlfriend's strangling, her body was not discovered until around 3 that Friday afternoon, when her father met maintenance workers who'd come to her apartment to repair the air conditioner.

He found her face-down in the bathtub when the workers let him in.

Meanwhile authorities in Troup County had no idea they'd jailed a murder suspect until they started getting frantic calls from Webb's relatives, warning not to let him go. Phenix City police also contacted the Troup County Sheriff's Office after Webb's body was found.

During Tuesday's court testimony, the forensic pathologist who conducted Webb's autopsy said she was strangled with such force the pressure of her constricted blood flow caused a "flame hemorrhage" in one eye, the bleeding so profuse her eye bulged out.

He explained a "flame" hemorrhage is called that because so many blood vessels burst in the eye the bleeding resembles the flame of a fire.

He said Webb also had a traumatic blow to the rear right side of her head, leaving a deep bruise.

Also his examination determined Webb was pregnant with a fetus 5 millimeters long, he said.

Webb was 26, and had three children, ages 6, 5 and 4. One child she'd had with Newsome.

Newsome's trial began Monday. The prosecution rested its case at 3:45 p.m. Wednesday.

The defense is expected to present its case starting Thursday morning at 9 in Russell County Circuit Judge Al Johnson's courtroom.