Steamboat Springs One day after Thomas Lee Johnson was bound over for trial on murder charges, the accused murderer's marriage to the victim's best friend ended.
After a preliminary hearing Dec. 4, Routt County Judge James Garrecht determined there was enough evidence for lawyers from the Routt County District Attorney's office to proceed with their case against the man believed to have killed Lori Bases in May.
A day later, Judge Garrecht signed off on a divorce petition submitted by attorneys representing Johnson and Kimberly Goodwin.
According to a court document, "The marriage between the parties is irretrievably broken. The marriage is dissolved and a decree of dissolution is entered."
For the court proceeding, neither Johnson nor Goodwin attended. They were represented by Ron Smith, Johnson's attorney, and Randall Klauzer, who represented Goodwin.
The court proceeding ended a marriage that began in April 1999, the document shows.
The couple was formally married May 28 of this year in Las Vegas. The ceremony occurred 16 days after Goodwin's best friend was found dead in her Steamboat Springs apartment.
After the marriage, the couple moved to California but separated on June 21, the document shows.
Johnson, 30, was arrested two days later by the Steamboat Springs Police Department for the murder of Bases.
Shortly after the arrest, Goodwin filed for her marriage to Johnson to be annulled in a Routt County court. Goodwin was seeking for the court to rule the marriage was invalid.
An annulment hearing was scheduled for September but was postponed after Johnson filed a response to the annulment petition.
According to Goodwin's annulment affidavit, she was "emotionally fragile" when Johnson suggested they take a trip to Las Vegas at the end of May.
In the affidavit, Goodwin explained why she married Johnson.
"Thomas indicated that he was a man of trustworthiness and honesty and that he had no involvement with the death of Lori Bases, and would aid me in dealing with the murder of my best friend upon becoming married," the affidavit states.
Goodwin "would not have gotten married" if Johnson wouldn't have represented himself as such, the affidavit states.
Johnson countered that in April 1999, the couple entered a common-law marriage. The couple "held themselves out to the public as husband and wife," the court document states.
Johnson introduced Goodwin-Johnson "as his wife." In return, Goodwin-Johnson introduced Johnson "as her husband," the document shows.
Johnson also claimed the couple consummated their marriage and lived together after the common-law marriage, the document shows.
Due to Johnson's response, Smith and Klauzer worked on an agreement that ended the marriage.
The two attorneys drafted a six-page separation agreement that both of their clients agreed to, the file shows.
The agreement entails how property, debt and other duties and obligations to the marriage are to be handled by Johnson and Goodwin, the document shows.
The marriage ended a day after Johnson was bound over for trial for charges of first-degree murder, first-degree criminal trespass and criminal mischief.
The charges stem from the death of the 31-year-old Bases and vandalism that was done to her sport-utility vehicle in April.
Johnson is set to appear in Routt County District Judge Richard P. Doucette's courtroom at 10 a.m. Jan. 16.
Bases was found dead by her roommate in their apartment on Steamboat Boulevard in the early morning hours of May 12. Bases had been stabbed numerous times and had wounds throughout her body, including her neck.
If convicted of the murder charge, Johnson could be sentenced to life in prison or death.