Man charged in double murder pleads not guilty

Tracie Hernandez
Tracie Hernandez
Jason Matthews (source: LMPD)
Jason Matthews (source: LMPD)

Posted by Mike Dever - email

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Clarence Stiff, charged with the murders of two people in Louisville on December 20 entered a not guilty plea Friday morning.

Jefferson District Court Judge David Holton, II accepted a not guilty plea from Stiff during his arraignment and set his bond at $1 million.  He remains in the Jefferson County Detention Center. He is scheduled to return to court on January 3rd.

Stiff is charged with the murders of Jason Matthews and Tracie Hernandez, who were found shot to death in the Washington Park Townhomes in the 5300 block of Halsey Court on Dec. 20.

Police were called to the scene after a family member found the couple. They were pronounced dead at the scene.

Attorney Derwin Webb, who will represent Stiff on the murder charges told WAVE 3 news reporter Chris McGill that he had not had an opportunity to talk at length with the defendant about the charges. "Obviously, they are very serious allegations," he said.  "We're going to do everything to fight the charges and have him exonerated."

Louisville Metro Police say a child was in the home at the time of the shooting, and he ran to a neighbor's house for help. The child was not injured.

"This is my worst nightmare, none of my kids were ever into anything bad," said Marie Dickerson, Tracie Hernandez's mother.  "They were all good people and for something like this to happen is just unbelievable."

Dickerson says her daughter was close to graduating from college. "She was a hard worker and she was six months away from graduating with a degree in social work," said Dickerson. "She was trying to make that dream come true."

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