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UPDATE Woman Strangled in Pool Side Murder

By: Lanetra Bennett; Leon County Sheriff's Office; Julie Montanaro Email
By: Lanetra Bennett; Leon County Sheriff's Office; Julie Montanaro Email

UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
March 14, 2013

A grand jury has indicted Steven Ives on charges of first degree murder and aggravated stalking after a court order.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
February 22, 2013

An LCSO spokesman say an autopsy confirmed that Mary Scurry was strangled.

Her boyfriend, Steven Ives, is jailed without bond in her murder.

Scurry's funeral is set for tomrorow.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
February 20, 2013

A Tallahassee woman strangled to death in the bushes behind her home sought a court order to keep her accused killer away. It wasn't enough.

An average of 100 women file for requests for restraining orders in Leon County every single month.

They offer important legal protections but counselors say they can also come with great risk.

Steven Ives signed a restraining order January 24th which barred him from having any contact with Mary Scurry for the next three years.

Less than a month later Mary Scurry was dead and arrest papers say Ives confessed to strangling her.

'We feel just devastated," Refuge House Executive Director Meg Baldwin said. "We take it personally."

Advocates at the Refuge House helped 1,012 women - and 228 men -file domestic violence injunctions last year.

The executive director says injunctions offer legal protections for the victim's home, children and more, but can often prompt a violent backlash.

"Getting an injunction is clearly a communication from the victim that she's not with that program anymore. So we anticipate that violence will increase," Baldwin said.

Family court manager Kim Stephens says there are an average of 100 domestic violence injunctions filed at the Leon County courthouse every month.

Some of them are in effect for 6 months, others for years and some are permanent.

"For a domestic violence injunction, you need to allege at least one incident of violence or threatened harm in the last six months," Stephens said. "For a repeated violence injunction, you need to allege at least two."

Violating a restraining order is a misdemeanor in most cases, but repeated, malicious violations can be deemed aggravated stalking, which is a felony.

The threat of arrest clearly wasn't deterrent enough for Steven Ives. Court papers say he admitted to going to Mary Scurry's apartment four times before he found her.

Those who work with victims of domestic violence say injunctions work best when women take advantage of counseling, consider emergency shelter and have a safety plan in place that includes their children.

Folks seeking an injunction can do so for free and they can get help filing the paperwork from a Refuge House counselor on the first floor of the Leon County Courthouse.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
February 19, 2013
6:30pm

A Tallahassee man admits to strangling his girlfriend in a jealous rage.

Steven Ives made his first appearance before a judge this morning and though all he said in court was yes sir and no sir ... he told deputies a lot more.

The body of 45 year old Mary Scurry was found Monday in a poolside bathroom just feet from her apartment at Hickory Hill.

Arrest papers released Tuesday show her boyfriend, Steven Ives, strangled her and then walked to the jail to turn himself in.

"I just feel like whatever they give him is not going to be enough," Scurry's niece Alishia Hughley said.

Ives was denied bond at his first court appearance Tuesday morning and his lawyer cautioned him against talking to anyone about what happened.

Yet arrest papers say he admitted to deputies that in earlier in the night he found another man watching tv at Scurry's apartment and went back four times to try to talk to her about it.

The fourth time, arrest papers say, Ives ran into Scurry outside and proceeded to choke her to death in the bushes.

Scurry's family was outraged to discover Ives told Mary "I love you, why are you doing this to me" as he choked her.

"He was telling her he loved her 30 times ... you don't hurt nobody you love," Scurry's niece Sallie Andrews said as she fought back tears.

"Uhh ... I wish I can kill him," Scurry's sister Patricia Scurry said.

LCSO reports Scurry had filed a restraining order against Ives last month. Tallahassee Police confirm they answered a call at Scurry's apartment Monday night.

Scurry's family is aching and angry that none of it was enough to keep her alive.

"Why couldn't he just leave her alone?" Andrews said. "Don't let him get away with this because she didn't deserve this."


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
February 19, 2013
10:50am

Arrest papers just released say Steven Ives admitted to strangling Mary Scurry and dragging her body into a poolside bathroom.

Court papers say Ives found another man in Scurry's apartment and told him to get out. Ives said the two men scuffled, but he left when Scurry and her sister threatened to call the police.

Ives told deputies he came back about an hour later and banged on the door, but got no answer. He told deputies he came back a total of four times and the fourth time, he ran into Scurry walking outside.

Arrest papers say Ives started choking her and she was gasping for air. He said he told Scurry "I love you, why are you doing this to me?" 30-40 times while she was being strangled.

Ives told deputies he continued to choke Scurry even after she quit fighting. He said he didn't want to leave her body in the bushes so he dragged her to the women's bathroom by the pool.

He then told deputies he walked to the jail to turn himself in.

In a restraining order filed last month, Mary Scurry said Ives "choked me on numerous occasions" and "left big blue marks on my body and black bruises."

Ives was denied bond in his first court appearance before a judge this morning.


UPDATED
By Julie Montanaro
February 19, 2013
9:15 am

Tallahassee, FL - Steven Ives was ordered held without bond during his first court appearance this morning. He is accused of murder and aggravated stalking.

Ives is accused of killing his girlfriend, 45 year old Mary Scurry, at the Hickory Hill apartments Monday. He turned himself in and told deputies where they could find her body.

Scurry's body was found in a bathroom near the complex swimming pool. Deputies have not yet revealed how she was killed. An autopsy is scheduled for later today.


UPDATE By: Lanetra Bennett
February 18, 2013

Tallahassee, FL - A Tallahassee man turns himself in and leads deputies to the body of his girlfriend.

Mary Scurry was found dead at her apartment complex early this morning, just weeks after she filed a restraining order against him.

Jacqueline Anderson says her best friend, Mary Scurry, would often run to her apartment for safety from her boyfriend, Steven Ives.

But, she didn't hear Scurry's knocks early Monday morning.

She did, however, hear Scurry's sister when she came knocking to tell her that Scurry was dead.

Anderson says, "I just couldn't take it. It really hurts and it's going to hurt for a while, for a long time because once you meet a friend that treats you the way me and her were, we were very good friends."

Thirty-four-year-old Steven Ives is now charged with Scurry's murder.

Deputies say Ives walked into the Leon County Jail around 2:40 Monday morning with blood on his shirt and told correctional officers that he'd done something "bad."

Investigators say the only details Ives gave them was the bathroom at Hickory Hill Apartments off Jackson Bluff Road.

Deputies say they found Scurry's body inside the women's restroom next to the swimming pool.

Scurry's nephew, Bobby Hughley, says, "He's lucky he turned himself in. he's luck; he's lucky. He's not crazy. I didn't know he was beating on my auntie. I love her with all my heart."

Family members say a drag mark that's behind Scurry's apartment is where Ives dragged her body.

Latonya Jones says she heard Scurry's knocks on Anderson's door. Jones says, "It was like a hurry and open knock but her neighbor didn't hear her, so she walked away, not knowing that would be her last time."

Court records show Ives was arrested and accused of battering Scurry in September 2012. Deputies say Scurry got a restraining order against Ives last month and Tallahassee Police confirm they were called to Hickory Hill last night, but Ives was not there when they arrived.


UPDATE By: Lanetra Bennett
February 18, 2013

Tallahassee, FL - Family members say the couple had problems in the past but they never imagined anything like this.

She was found in the public women's restroom near the apartment complex swimming pool.


By: Julie Montanaro
February 18, 2013

Tallahassee, FL - Court records show that the man accused of killing Mary Scurry at the Hickory Hill Apartments was not only under a January 2013 court order to stay away from her, but had been arrested for battering her last fall.

Court records show that Steven Ives was arrested September 5, 2012 for misdemeanor battery and ordered to have no contact with Scurry.

He bonded out of jail nine days later and had a court date in that case coming up in March.


Leon County Sheriff's Office Release

The Leon County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the death of woman whose body was discovered at Hickory Hills Apartments. At 2:40 a.m., Steven Ives, 34, walked into the Leon County Jail and told correctional officers that he was there to turn himself in. Ives told deputies he had done something “bad” but would not elaborate.

Ives, who had blood on his shirt, also mentioned the bathroom at 2315 Jackson Bluff Road. Deputies responded to Hickory Hill Apartments where they located 45 year old Mary Scurry deceased in a pool side restroom.

Detectives from LCSO’s Violent Crimes and Crime Scene units responded to the scene, canvassed the area, conducted interviews and collected forensic evidence. Detectives have confirmed that Ives had been arguing with Scurry earlier in the evening.

Court records also show that Scurry obtained an Injunction for Protection against Domestic Violence was obtained on January 14, 2013 and Ives was served with that protection order three days later.

Ives was interviewed and taken to the Leon County Jail.
An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday. This investigation is continuing.


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