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Teens accused of murdering Fairfield teacher seek release from jail before trial

Nohema Graber (photo courtesy of Benner Funeral Home)

FAIRFIELD — The teenagers accused of murdering a high school Spanish teacher in Fairfield are seeking a reduction in their bonds and release from jail as they await a trial.

Sixteen-year-olds Jeremy Goodale and Willard Miller each face a first-degree murder charge in the killing of Nohema Graber, whose body was found in a Fairfield park earlier this month.

Prosecutor Scott Brown says based on the factors in the case, bond at the least should be kept at $1 million or even raised to $2 million each.

“The investigation in this case has revealed that the defendant, along with the codefendant, has engaged in an extremely brutal murder,” Brown says.

Attorneys for the teenagers say they don’t have the means to flee and, if they’re released, their families will monitor them. “My client’s parents and extended family are willing to ensure 24/7 monitoring,” says Christine Branstad, an attorney for Miller, “are willing to provide different residences at which he can live, they’re willing to restrict any access to electronics.”

Prosecutors say the families are not capable of monitoring the teens as the crime was committed while the 16-year-olds were living at home. Judge Joel Yates heard the lawyers’ arguments in court yesterday. He plans to issue written rulings next week.

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