Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 53° Partly Cloudy
News >  Spokane

Son-in-law accused of killing three in Colbert home; suspect was picked by GOP as state senate candidate in 2011

UPDATED: Sat., May 30, 2015

Senate candidate Roy Murry speaks to his qualifications during an interview with Spokane County commissioners Friday, Feb. 11, 2011. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
Senate candidate Roy Murry speaks to his qualifications during an interview with Spokane County commissioners Friday, Feb. 11, 2011. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
The son-in-law of one of the three people shot to death before fire was set to their Colbert home and barn was arrested this afternoon on three counts of first-degree murder, the Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich said. Roy H. Murry, of Lewiston, was taken into custody after he appeared voluntarily at the Public Safety Building and was interviewed by detectives, Knezovich said. Terry Canfield, 59; his wife, Lisa M. Canfield, 52; and Lisa Canfield’s son, John Robert Constable, 23, died from gunshot wounds before the 2:08 a.m. fire call by a neighbor on Tuesday at 20 E. Chattaroy Road. Murry is married to Lisa Canfield’s daughter, Mandy Murry. Terry Canfield’s body was found in a small barn behind the home, which was completely destroyed by fire. The other two bodies were found inside the house. Knezovich said that investigators believe that Murry may have been waiting for Mandy Murry to show up at her mother’s home. Mandy Murry had recently moved in with her mother and was getting a divorce, according to a neighbor and fellow church member of the family. “It is our belief that he was up there waiting for her,” Knezovich said. The Murrys had been having marital trouble, he said. Terry and Lisa Canfield belonged to the nearby Chattaroy Community Church. Mandy Murry had gone to services with them recently, the neighbor said. Knezovich said that investigators have been working long hours since the crimes to identify and apprehend the killer. He said his major crimes detectives had been working “very diligently…I am pleased with the work done by Spokane County detectives.” Detectives earlier this week had gone to Pullman and Lewiston and made contact with Murry. They asked him to travel to Spokane for a second interview because of questions that arose from his first statements, Knezovich said. Investigators are still sifting debris at the crime scene, and are expected to seek as many as five additional search warrants. Arson charges are possible in the case, the sheriff said. Knezovich said that a handgun with the same caliber as the weapon used in the murders was seized in a search of Murry’s vehicle, a 2010 Dodge Caliber with Idaho plate number N184600. Investigators have said that two separate fires appeared to have been set - one in the home and another in the barn where Terry Canfield’s body was found. Detectives are asking the public for any information about Murry’s activities for the past 10 days. Witnesses are asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233. “Any information you can give us will help,” Knezovich said in placing his request for witness information. In 2011, the Spokane County Republican Party picked Murry to be one of three candidates that county commissioners could consider to replace state Sen. Bob McCaslin after McCaslin resigned for health reasons. Murry was operating a security business at the time, according to a news account. Commissioners chose Jeff Baxter for the seat over Murry and state Rep. Matt Shea. Murry earned a Bronze Star for valor as an Army National Guard sergeant in Iraq.Murry was severely injured by a bomb in Iraq. He said at the time of the nomination that he now carries a pistol almost everywhere he goes. When he was up for consideration for the Senate seat, Murry’s commander, Lt. Col. Thomas Heslin Jr., told commissioners in a letter that Murry, despite being wounded, returned fire in a “complex ambush” and played a “critical” role in the safe escape of a “VIP” Murry’s unit was protecting. Just days after Murry was nominated as one of three candidates to replace McCaslin, he was arrested in Las Vegas on a firearms charge. Police said his car was parked on the side of a road at a strange angle with its motor running. Officers said they saw tobacco juice drooling from Murry’s mouth and body armor in the car, and had trouble waking him up. Officers asked Murry if he had any firearms; he replied he did in the trunk. When police ordered him out of the car and patted him down, they found a semi-automatic handgun in his waistband, covered by his coat. He also had two knives, two ammunition clips and some loose rounds in his pocket. He was arrested for carrying a concealed weapon - as well as sleeping in public. Later, he said in a news interview that didn’t dispute that he was asleep in the car. He said he had gone out to fill a prescription for his fiancée, who was not named in a news story on the arrest. He also has a previous conviction in Spokane County for possessing a switchblade knife. Not long after the Senate selection process was over, Murry was arrested after he allegedly carried a loaded gun into a veterans hospital in Walla Walla. Murry, who was 26 at the time, told his doctor during an April 8 examination that he carries a firearm “24/7,” according to a report filed in U.S. District Court in Spokane. Hospital staff observed a “bulge” on Murry’s back right side and contacted hospital police. Police at the time said his 9mm Beretta was loaded with a round in the chamber and Murry also had a knife with a blade longer than 3 inches. A grand jury indicted Murry on a misdemeanor charges of possession of a firearm in a federal facility and possession of a dangerous weapon in a federal facility. Knezovich said that Murry has a history of carrying multiple weapons and wearing “body armor.” The sheriff said Murry was identified as a possible suspect early in the investigation. Murry has not been involved in GOP politics locally in the past several years, the Republican sheriff said.
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.