Charging docs reveal details in murder case against Ex-Bothell councilmember

Editor's Note: The following article contains graphic content related to a murder case. Reader discretion is advised.

Charging documents unveiled Friday by the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office shed light on the case against James Gregory McNeal Jr., accused of second-degree murder. 

According to the documents, the alleged incident occurred between April 28, 2024, and April 30, 2024, in which McNeal is accused of causing the death of Liliya A. Guyvoronsky, 20, while committing or attempting to commit second-degree assault, specifically by strangulation or suffocation.

McNeal's arrest followed a call from his attorney referencing a potential homicide at Guyvoronsky's residence. Upon arrival, law enforcement discovered Guyvoronsky's deceased body in her bed. McNeal was promptly taken into custody.

The documents delve into the complex dynamics of McNeal and Guyvoronsky's relationship, highlighting a tumultuous history. Details from Guyvoronsky's family further illuminate interactions with McNeal.

Evidence from Guyvoronsky's residence and her family show that she and McNeal had been in a "dating relationship that lasted several months," and that he was likely supporting her financially, estimated at approximately $10,000 a month. 

At the time police made entry into the home, Guyvoronsky was lying naked in her bed, her "safe space" as documents say she had described it to her mother, having been deceased for some time. Observed around the residence were handwritten notes reminding her not to have contact with the defendant.

The documents filed Friday also described photographs of McNeal and Guyvoronsky together in various locations, and several handwritten lists believed to be authored by Guyvoronsky, were found throughout her residence.

A note dated April 29, 2024, was described in the documents as a "to-do list" with several items listed, including "Do not interact w/James today." Another note read: "Trying to do the least with the most, him being 58 … and he doesn’t want to help me financially … also he turns everything on you, can't take ownership for anything." 

Another note with similar handwriting read: "Make sure you do not forget how you felt. The anger, hurt, neglect from James knowing you are struggling does not care dismissing any attempts to ask for help. Demanding sex, demanding access to everything. Ex. Key to home." Another note read: "is mentally, emotionally abuse, no empathy."

Guyvoronsky’s parents provided additional details in the documents they learned from their daughter, regarding her relationship with McNeal. The documents indicate Guyvoronsky met McNeal "while she was working as a stripper" and say she "went on dates and attended parties, with McNeal purchasing Guyvoronsky dresses and shoes. A few months ago, Guyvoronsky stopped working at the strip club and McNeal began financially supporting her. The relationship was described by Guyvoronsky’s parents as constantly off and on."

The pattern, as Guyvoronsky explained it via text messages to her family in the documents: "He will be mad for one day, I'll do silent treatment, Until he gets lonely and sad, Then he will be desperate to get me back, And will start blowing up my phone and love bombing, Presents, Extra extra nice things, We go through this, Like once a month."

Bail has been set at $3,000,000, reflecting concerns about McNeal's potential danger to the community and the risk of flight if released. Additionally, the documents request that McNeal be barred from contacting Guyvoronsky's family or any witnesses involved in the case. The documents also mention McNeal has an older criminal history, with the most recent conviction in 1995.  

An autopsy report is pending, with initial observations revealing petechiae and subcutaneous hemorrhages on Guyvoronsky's body, along with a presumptive positive for methamphetamine/amphetamine in her system.

Further developments in the case are anticipated as investigations continue.

Earlier on Friday, members of the Seattle Police Department SWAT team surrounded the Bothell residence of James McNeal. In addition to crime tape, FOX 13 Seattle observed officers removing boxes from his home and bringing in tarps.

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The Seattle Police Department is currently at the Bothell residence of James McNeal, the former Bothell councilmember accused of the murder of 20-year-old Lilya Guyvoronsky. (AJ Janavel, FOX 13 Seattle)

This is a developing story; check back for updates.


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