State Seeks Pardons for Defendants Wrongfully Convicted in 1985 Nebraska Murder

Price, the psychologist, told Shelden it was likely she was having memory problems because of stress and told her she might remember more of the murder in her dreams, according to Price's deposition. She said she only remembered, through her dreams, that Gonzalez and James Dean were present for the murder years after the murder took place, after Price continually asked if she was sure she had named everyone who was involved.

Dean, during a July 1989 deposition, said that most of his memories of the murder came from dreams. A psychological report from 1989 says that Dean "continued to deny being in the apartment but as the interview progressed he began to show that he was doubting the voracity of his statements."

Police initially told Winslow, who was in jail for an unrelated assault charge, that they would get him a deal on the assault case if he offered up details of the murder, his lawyer says. In taped interviews, Winslow gave police three different version of events. His lawyer said he was threatened with the death penalty if he did not confess to being involved in the Wilson murder.

DeWitt and Searcey denied that they threatened any of the defendants and said defense lawyers were present for all the interviews.

Of the six co-defendants, Joseph White was the only one who continued to deny being involved in the murder. "They kept talking about repressed memories," White said recently. "I said this is crazy."

Defendants in Helen Wilson Case Change Their Stories

The other defendants were not so steadfast. Taylor told several different stories, at times implicating herself in the murder and at times denying being involved. At the time of the murder, Taylor was often drunk or high, the kind of person, she said recently, who couldn't get out of bed without pouring some whiskey down her throat. She often had trouble with her memory.

"I don't remember it but the officers said that they could prove I was up there at the time," she told police in one of her taped interrogations. "I don't remember much of '85 at all."

Taylor had a history of mental illness and memory problems. She told a psychologist that as a child she used to beat her head against the wall when she was angry, and often spoke to her imaginary twin sister, whose voice she claimed to be able to hear.

She told attorneys that she could communicate telepathically with her fiancé, who she described as a "white warlock." She also said she had an "all-seeing eye" in her jail cell that protected her from evil spirits and that she had five past lives.

Though she implicated herself and White in the murder, she initially got many of the details of the crime wrong, saying Wilson lived in a house rather than an apartment building, putting different people at the crime scene.

"Is it possible since you're having a rough time bringing this to your mind that you could be confused as to maybe the location of the residence, is that possible?" Searcey asked.

"Yeah, with my personality disorder it's hard," she said.

Taylor said she and White drove to Wilson's house in the evening in a light blue car, though police knew Wilson was killed late at night or in the early morning hours and suspected the car was brown and green.

After a 19-minute gap in the interrogation tape, Taylor said she remembered the brown and green car, a brick apartment building and said different people were with her.

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