Timeline of events in the Berkley case


19-year-old Monique Berkley moves from her home in Tampa, Florida, to Ventura County, California, to live with a woman she met over the internet. The two unite in a religious ceremony that, while not state-recognized, allows the church to recognize them as a married couple.


Paul befriends Monique after meeting her at a Circle-K in Ventura County. Monique leaves her partner.

April 2001

Monique and Paul marry in Las Vegas.


Paul re-enlists as a Navy Reservist.


The Berkleys move to Clayton with Paul's children, Becky and Ezekiel.

Fall 2004

Monique meets Andrew Canty, a friend of Zeke's from Clayton High School.



Paul Berkley's Navy Reserve Unit ships out for the Middle East. Canty and his friend Latwon Johnson start hanging out at the Berkley home.


After Canty's relationship Monique turns sexual, he moves into the Berkley home. Johnson is now dating Becky Berkley.


Johnson leaves for school at East Carolina University.

December 14

Paul Berkley returns home from the Middle East.

December 15

Canty moves his things back to his mother's home and tells his mother that Monique is "getting weird."

December 17

Paul and Monique have dinner in Clayton and attend a late showing of "King Kong" in North Raleigh. After the movie, Monique suggests they drive to nearby Millbrook Exchange Park and have a "romantic evening" outside.

December 18

Paul Berkley is shot in the head and killed. Monique is also shot, but in the shoulder. Monique soon tells police about Canty and Johnson.

December 19

Police arrest Monique, Canty, and Johnson, and charge them with first degree murder.



Wake County Assistant District Attorney Susan Spurlin announces that prosecutors will seek the death penalty for Monique, Canty, and Johnson.


Newly released autopsy reports show that Paul Berkley was stabbed near his right ear, in addition to being shot in the right temple.


Monique's attorney, Johnny Gaskins, withdraws from the case, citing personal reasons.



Canty's murder trial begins in Raleigh. During the second week of the trial, Canty escapes the death penalty by pleading guilty to the charges. Canty is sentenced to prison for the rest of his life.

Sept. 26

Monique Berkley appears in a Wake County court and pleads guilty to first-degree murder. She also avoids the death penalty, and acknowledges in court that she'll spend the rest of her life in prison with no chance of parole.

Source: News reportsCompiled by Brooke Cain and Susan Ebbs