Woman Avoids Death Sentence for Murder of Store Clerk After Partner Sentenced to Die

A 27-year-old Nebraska woman on Monday avoided the death sentence after being convicted of the online-dating murder of a store clerk, along her partner who received the death sentence two years ago, the Associated Press reported.

In 2017, Bailey Boswell and her boyfriend Aubrey Trail, 55, had planned to kill someone before they met Sidney Loofe, a Nebraska hardware store clerk, on the dating app Tinder. They lured Loofe to meet them, strangled her, and her body parts were later found in garbage bags in ditches along country roads in Clay County, cut into 14 pieces.

Boswell avoided being the first woman in Nebraska to be sentenced to death and was instead sentenced to life in prison as a three-judge panel voted 2-1, with one judge saying he did not believe the state met its burden of proof for a death sentence.

Trail was sentenced to death, and admitted that he repeatedly lied to authorities and plotted to kill Loofe two to three hours before her murder but claimed that Boswell was not in the room and did not know he was going to kill Loofe.

Boswell was convicted in October of 2020 of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder and improper disposal of human remains. Trail was convicted of the same charges in 2019 and sentenced to death in June. No execution date has been set.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Bailey Boswell
Bailey Boswell, 27, avoided the death sentence after being convicted of an online-dating murder of a store clerk in Nebraska. Above, Boswell walks out of the courtroom after being sentenced to life in prison without parole for the 2017 murder of Sidney Loofe, on November 8, 2021, in Wilber, Nebraska. Justin Wan/Lincoln Journal Star/Associated Press

Boswell was sentenced at the county courthouse in Wilber, about 40 miles (65 kilometers) southwest of Lincoln.

Although Trail has changed his story numerous times, he admitted at his sentencing that he strangled Loofe with an electric cord, as prosecutors had alleged. He said he tied up Loofe and killed her because she "freaked out" when he told her about his lifestyle with Loofe and other young women, which included defrauding antique dealers and rough group sex.

Trail became the 12th man on death row in Nebraska, a state that rarely carries out executions. He missed much of his own trial after slashing his neck in the courtroom and yelling, "Bailey is innocent, I curse you all."

In Nebraska, all death sentences are automatically appealed. The state's most recent execution was of convicted murderer Carey Dean Moore in 2018, after Moore dropped all of his appeals and asked to be killed. Before that, Nebraska's last execution was in 1997.