COQUILLE, Ore. (CBS) When Nick McGuffin pleaded not guilty Tuesday to the 2000 murder of Leah Freeman, his high school sweetheart, it stirred up anger from both of the families involved the case.
Cory Courtright said she was overcome when, after fighting for ten years to get justice for her daughter, she finally got to watch the man accused of her murder enter the courtroom in chains.
"I was staring at the man that's believed to be my daughter's killer," Cory Courtright told The Register-Guard. "I [could] hardly look at him. I nearly fainted."
Nick McGuffin's family was also in the courtroom Tuesday, but what they saw was an innocent man that they feel has been targeted and persecuted since the day Leah went missing. Kathleen McGuffin even confronted a sobbing Courtright in court saying "cry all you want, my son is innocent," according to the paper.
Bruce McGuffin, the father of Nicholas, says their lives were turned upside down by Leah's disappearance and says that it tore his son apart. He says he believes that his son is innocent, according to the paper.
"I would have been the first one who would have turned him in if I knew he did it," Bruce McGuffin told the Register-Guard.
"The last ten years have been hell for [Nick]," Bruce McGuffin said.
Nick McGuffin is currently being held on $2 million bond, a hearing for a bond reduction has been scheduled for Sept. 2.