Evansville indiana murders 1980

Evansville indiana murders 1980 DEFAULT

Last words

Anne Ryder/Eyewitness News

Michigan City, March 2 - Twenty-three years on death row have given Donald Ray Wallace nothing but time, time to consider how the kid in a cowboy hat became a pariah, how an evil act is born and whether it ever dies, even when he does.

The house where it happened on Aspen Drive looks much the same as it did 25 years ago. But the pain is still fresh.

"It was like yesterday," says Diana Harrington. 'When I remember Pat and Theresa (Diana's sister) and the kids I remember them and there's this glimmer of good memories and then it smacks you in the face of what happened."

A family of four, the Gilligans, were bound with vacuum cleaner cord and murdered with six shots to the head and a barbell by the man they caught burglarizing their home.

For 25 years Harrington has carried the burden of wondering about the last moments of her sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew. "Did the children watch? Was my sister first? Was there a lot of pain? It's like going to the dentist and the dentist says its only going to hurt for a couple of seconds, those seconds last for eternity."

It didn't take long to find the killer, Donald Ray Wallace, a year-old drug addicted burglar with a violent past. His arrogance and intellect made him a lightning rod. He has a near genius IQ.

"I think he's brilliant." Stan Levco prosecuted the case. "Not one of the most intelligent murderers or intelligent criminals, one of the most intelligent people. His words are perfect. He says the perfect words."

"I'm on death row. All the machinery of the state is grinding to kill me." Wallace's words are poetic, written in letters from prison where he has now spent more than half his life.

"I watch birds fly over. Sometimes I can hear dogs barking and children playing somewhere beyond our wall that terminates our rec yard. And all these things are wondrous to behold."

Wallace, now 47, has never given an interview. This is his first and his last.

Why? "I would like people to know I'm rational. I'm not a raving maniac. I'm not hostile, that I'm not whatever you think a murderer is supposed to be."

Anne Ryder: Are you saying that here a new man has grown?

Wallace: Yeah, I'm saying that. I was a dope fiend. I had no moral center. I had no spiritual center. I had no rational center. It's a simple fact of life. You live and grow and mature and for the most part we become better people.

Wallace, for the first time publicly, is taking full and sole responsibility for what happened on Aspen Drive January 14,

Wallace: Who wants to be responsible for this? Who wants to look in the mirror and say you did that, you know, you.

Ryder: How do you explain why, why this happened?

Wallace: What happened that night was a moment of utter madness. It was panic, because my original intention was not to kill anyone, it was to get the situation under control, and Patrick attacked, which I can't blame him for. I would too if I were in his position. Once the shooting started all hell broke loose.

Ryder: Why the kids? How do you kill kids?

Wallace: It was almost like watching a movie or something, like I became completely disconnected from everything that was going on. It's like a dream, or nightmare. I can't tell you why. I've asked myself a million times why. I don't know. I can't say why.

Ryder: Diana Harrington says his apology is always an implied apology.

Wallace: If she wants it here, I do say that I am eternally sorry for what I did to your family. I wish I could take it back, but I can't. I can't change the past. This line from Omar Khayam keeps coming back to me time and time again in my life. Something to the effect of, "The hand of history having writ, moves on, and all your tears can't call back one word of it.

Ryder: And you have shed tears?

Wallace: I have shed tears.

Ryder: Have you suffered?

Wallace: Yeah, I have suffered a lot, but I wouldn't give my own back for anything because it's the suffering that sort of leads you to truth.

In prison Wallace has read 4, books, learning Greek, Latin and some Hebrew and Arabic.

Ryder: Where are you on God?

Wallace: I believe there's only one creator of the universe. There's only one person that judges in the end. Only one architect of all that is. Whatever you call him, I call him God.

And he calls death row his monastery.

Wallace: The person I was 25 years ago has long since been dead. I got rid of him.

Ryder: You wrote, "Life is a pearl beyond price."

Wallace: I had to understand that to understand what I had taken from the people I killed, and having come to that, I'm ready to give my life now.

He sat on death row for so long because he exhausted every appeal and with each new attorney came mounds of evidence to wade through. It sat on one judge's desk seven years.

What happens to turn a kid in a cowboy hat into a killer? Wallace has a genius IQ and some thoughts on the matter. He says he's changed and wants to reach kids headed down his path before he dies next week.

"I was a runaway train. I was waiting for the wreck." Wallace is picking up the pieces of his life, just in time to lose it. He'll die by lethal injection at the Indiana State prison next week.

Wallace says he's just a shadow of the young man who arrived in ; the arrogant, angry, drug addicted burglar who murdered a family of four.

"It's just one moment, one crazy insane moment that I wished for all these years I could take back."

January, , Patrick and Teresa Gilligan, five-year-old Lisa and four-year-old Greg surprised Wallace when they arrived home during a burglary. He tied them in vacuum cleaner cord and shot them execution style.

"You can't really put closure on such a tragedy as this." Diana Harrington now wears her late sister's ring, the one Wallace stole.

She and her husband Ted have moved from Evansville, but, like the city, can't put the murder behind them. "He asked why Evansville still thinks of him as a demon. Why shouldn't they?"

"Imagine trying not to change in 25 years. You can't do it. Life instructs you." In prison, Wallace has become a scholar of philosophy, language and religious study.

Anne Ryder: What have you learned about yourself?

Wallace: I've learned that I don't want to hurt anybody. I don't want to be superior to anyone. I don't want to do any evil to anyone. There are two forces in life. On one hand you have love and hope and on the other hand you have fear and mistrust. Love and hope, they take chances. Love is brave. It wants to see people redeemed. So if you believe in a loving God and a hateful adversary, which one of those belongs to whom?

Ted Harrington calls Wallace "a mass murderer and he needs to be remembered that way."

The Harrington's say Wallace never gave their relatives a second chance.

"Theres only one person who will be able to judge him," says Diana.

Ryder: People in Evansville say this man is a con man, a manipulator, he has no conscience.

Wallace: That's convenient. They're getting ready to kill me, so it would be better if that were the case. But as for being a con man, to what end? What do I gain at this point? As I leave this world, to anyone I've hurt, I am sorry for what pain I caused you. This is sincere. It's absolute.

Wallace was in trouble early, a kid without a rudder passed among his relatives, acting out by age "If (I) would have only once turned around and looked at the future and saw how wide it was, then my life would have been completely different."

Ryder: Were you a monster?

Wallace: No, I became something pretty bad. I was scared to death and fear is such a powerful thing. It can make you cringe and paralyze you, but if you really go with it it becomes like a war engine. It makes you really dangerous.

He cloaked himself in a tough guy mantra during a stint in prison at age "Don't think, don't try to talk your way out of it. Strike hard, strike fast and don't stop till you win or you're dead. That's the condition you find me in January 14, with this deadliness full of drugs. The result was probably inevitable."

He says he's concerned about kids who are like he was. "Even if just one person turns away from what happened to me, good."

Ryder: Do you believe in hell and if not hell, where does atonement come in?

Wallace: I just know I've done everything I can here and now to try to atone for what I did and become a better human being, and whatever befalls me (on) the other side, I leave that to God.

"I'm just gonna miss him so much." His half-sister Kathleen knows the burden of growing up Wallace in Evansville. "There goes the murderer's sister. I will always love him. I always have and I always will and I don't care what anyone else things of him."

Wallace: That's one of the curious things about the death penalty. When the state kills me you're doubling the amount of misery.

Ryder: Have you thought about what you're going to say?

Wallace: Yeah, I think that's part of why I'm doing this interview too, so I can get all the saying out of the way and just leave time for the dying.

But Wallace says he dies with a reverence for what he truly stole that January night 25 years ago. "Life is an incomprehensibly wonderful gift. No matter what happens. No matter how bad things seem, is it not good to be alive?

And isn't every moment as good as a brand new beginning if you want it to be?"

Wallace, after availing himself of 23 years of appeals, is not seeking clemency.

Asked whether he deserves to die, he said, "I leave that to God."

This murder still hits a nerve in Evansville. Twenty-five years later there is much anger and pain.

The Gilligan's relatives will lead a prayer service in Evansville the night of Wallace's execution. He is to die at midnight the morning of March

What happens to turn a kid in a cowboy hat into a killer?  Donald Ray Wallace junior has a genius I-Q and some thoughts on the matter.

He says he's changed and wants to reach kids headed down his path before he dies next week.

Eyewitness News reporter has corresponded with him from seven for seven years from death row.  Wallace chooses to make his last words through this interview with Eyewitness News.

"I was a runaway train. I was waiting for the wreck" says death row inmate Donald Ray Wallace.

Donald Ray Wallace is picking up the pieces of his life, just in time to lose it. He'll die by lethal injection at the Indiana State prison next week.

Wallace says he's just a shadow of the young man who arrived in the arrogant, angry drug addicted burglar who murdered a family of four.

Wallace continues, "Its just one moment-one crazy insane moment that I wished for all these years I could take back."

January,   Patrick and Teresa Gilligan, 5 year old Lisa and 4 year old Greg  surprised Wallace when they arrived home during a burglary.

He tied them in vacuum cleaner cord and shot them execution style.

"You can't really put closure on such a tragedy as this" says the Diana Harrington the sister of one of the victims.

Diana Harrington now wears her late sister's ring, the one Wallace stole.

She and her husband Ted have moved from Evansville, but, like the city, can't put the murder behind them.

"He asked why Evansville still thinks of him as a demon, why shouldn't they?" says Harrington. 

"Imagine trying not to change in 25 years. You can't do it. Life instructs you." Wallace reflects.

In prison, Wallace has become a scholar of philosophy, language and religious study.

Anne Ryder: What have your learned about yourself?

Wallace: I've learned that I don't want to hurt anybody. I don't want to be superior to anyone. I don't want to do any evil to anyone. There are two forces in life.

On one hand you have love and hope and on the other hand you have fear and mistrust.
Love and hope-they take chances. Love is brave. It wants to see people redeemed.

So if you believe in a loving god and a hateful adversary, which one of those belongs to whom?

Ted Harrington the brother-in-law of the victims says "He's a mass murderer and he needs to be remembered that way."

The Harrington's say Wallace never gave their relatives a second chance.

Diana: There's only one person who will be able to judge him. People in Evansville say this man is a con man, a manipulator, he has no conscnience.

Wallace: That's convenient. They're getting ready to kill me so it would be better if that were the case but as for being a con man-to what end. What do I gain at this point.

 As I leave this world, to anyone I've hurt, I am sorry for what pain I caused you. This is sincere. Its absolute.

Wallace was in trouble early a kid without a rudder passed among his relatives acting out by age

Wallace: If would have only once turned around and looked at the future and saw how wide it was then my life would have been completely different.

Anner Ryder:  Were you a Monster?

Wallace:No I became something pretty bad. I was scared to death and fear is such a powerful thing. It can make you cringe and paralyze you but if you really go with it it becomes like a war engine. It makes you really dangerous.

He cloaked himself in a tough guy mantra during a stint in prison at age

Wallace: Don't think don't try to talk your way out of it, strike hard, strike fast and don't stop till you win or youre dead. That's the condition you find me in January 14th with this deadliness full of drugs. The result was probably inevitable.

He says he's concerned about kids who are like he was.

Wallace: Even if just one person turns away from what happened to me-good.

Anne Ryder: Do you believe in hell and if not hell where does atonement come in?

Wallace: I just know I've done everything I can here and now to try to atone for what I did and become a better human being.  And whatever befalls me the other side. I leave that to God.

Kathleen Wallace Mason, his half sister says, " I'm just gonna miss him so much."

His half sister Kathleen knows the burden of growing up Wallace in Evansville.

Kathleen Wallace: There goes the murderer's sister. I will always love him. I always have and I always will and I don't care what anyone else things of him.

Donald Ray Wallace: That's one of the curious things about the death penalty.  When the state kills me  you're doubling the amount of misery.

Anne Ryder: Have you thought about what you're going to say?

Wallace: Yeah I think that's part of why I'm doing this interview too so I can get all the saying out of the way and just leave time for the dying.

But Wallace says he dies with a reverence for what he truly stole that january night 25 years ago.

Wallace: Life is an incomprehensibly wonderful gift. No matter what happens. No matter how bad things seem, is it not good to be alive? And isn't every moment as good as a brand new beginning if you want it to be?

Wallace after availing himself of 23 years of appeals is not seeking clemency. He is schedule to die at a-m next Thursday.

Asked whether he deserves to die--he said--I leave that to God.

The Harringtons will spend that evening at a prayer service for the victims in Evansville.

Sours: https://www.wthr.com/article/news/last-words/e42d8cfdde-adc4e

New Media Producer: Kerry Corum

UPDATE: Stefanie Silvey wraps-up the Wallace story for us from the Indiana State Prison in Michigan City.

After spending more than half his life on death row, one of Indiana's most notorious killers paid for the murders of the Patrick Gilligan family, with his own life. 

Donald Ray Wallace was pronounced dead at  Thursday morning, his last words were, "I hope everyone can find peace with this." The process started shortly after midnight, when he was wheeled in on a gurney. The witnesses left visibly upset, but said he was ready for this and that he looked at it as an early parole. This, after being on death row for more than 23 years.

UPDATE: A man who killed an Evansville family,

and then spent 23 years on death row, has been executed at the

Indiana State Prison.

With groups of supporters and opponents of the death penalty

waiting outside the prison, Donald Ray Wallace was put to death by

chemical injection shortly after  Thursday morning.

He is the 84th person executed by the state of Indiana since

, and the 12th since the death penalty was reinstated in

Wallace was convicted in of killing Theresa Gilligan, her husband, Patrick, and their two young children during a robbery at their home.

He exhausted all his appeals, even to the US Supreme Court, and decided not to ask Governor Mitch Daniels for clemency. A Department of Correction spokesman says Wallace's final statement was, "I hope everyone can find peace with this."

He was injected with the lethal chemicals and was pronounced dead at  Thursday morning.

Later, his lawyer read a statement outside the prison, saying the execution "only created more pain and continued the cycle of hate and violence." Attorney Sarah Nagy says, in spite of the execution, it was Wallace's wish that healing may finally come to everyone affected by the murders.

Wallace spent much of his final day visiting with friends. He had a final meal of filet mignon, baked potato and cake on Tuesday.

Previously: Donald Ray Wallace has been executed for the murders of the Patrick Gilligan family in Evansville in

Michigan City State Prison officials report that the year-old Wallace died as the result of lethal injection at am CST Thursday.

Wallace's last words were, "I hope everyone can find peace with this."

Shortly after the execution, two of Wallace's family members spoke with the media. Shannon Wallace said, "In killing Don, the state has only created more pain, and continued the cycle of hate and violence. Don felt this way, and so do we."

Kathleen Wallace added, "In spite of this, it was his wish that peace and healing may finally come to all those affected by this case, and everyone who was touched by his life."

Newswatch's Stefanie Silvey is at the prison and will provide live reports on Newswatch Sunrise and throughout the day Thursday. Come back to this site for updates as they become available.

Some contributions courtesy AP, All Rights Reserved.

Sours: https://wwwnews.com/story//donald-ray-wallace-executed
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Former detective remembers run-ins with notorious Evansville killer Donald Wallace | Webb

The Gilligans were a loving family.

Teachers commented on how well they took care of their children – 5-year-old Lisa and 4-year-old Gregory Patrick.

Theresa used to chair meetings for the Indiana Association of Legal Secretaries, once helming an astrology-themed talk called “Age of Aquarius.” And Patrick set a discus record at Wake Forest before coming home to work in Evansville. 

They all lived in a sharp house on the North Side of Evansville.

"Patrick and I are so lucky," Theresa told her mother and sister on Jan. 12, "There's really so few people who ever find the kind of love we had."

Two days later, the whole family would be dead. 

More:Investigation Discovery to explore mass murder of Evansville's Gilligan family

Lisa Gilligan (left) and Gregory Patrick Gilligan

On Jan. 14, they walked into their home and caught year-old Donald Ray Wallace in the middle of a burglary. He didn’t want any witnesses. So he tied the family up and shot them to death one by one.

Indiana executed him in

On Thursday, Investigation Discovery will tell that story in a special slated to air at 9 p.m. It will feature interviews with Vanderburgh County Judge Robert Pigman and former prosecutor Stan Levco, among others.

More from Jon Webb:This Evansville lawyer was shot to death. Decades later, mystery still lingers | Webb

The cable channel talked to another law enforcement official as well: retired State Police Detective Larry McCart.

McCart, a family member of mine, knew Wallace long before the Gilligan killings – back when the murderer was just a middling criminal. McCart busted him for burglary, suspected him of smuggling drugs into jails and once lived less than yards from him.

Investigation Discovery ultimately decided to cut McCart’s interview, so he shared some of his stories with me.

Donald Ray Wallace

Beating the polygraph

They met on April 20,

McCart and trooper John Neidig responded to a reported shooting outside a home in Posey County. A young man named Donny Wallace claimed to have been listening to music in his father’s car when a shadowy assailant appeared out of nowhere and fired a bullet through the back window.

At least that’s the story Wallace peddled when McCart and Neidig pulled up.

He prattled about other things, too. About how, when he was 15, he lied to cops about his age to get booked into an adult jail instead of juvie. It didn’t take him long to figure out he’d made a huge mistake. So he fessed up, went to juvenile hall, and promptly escaped by leaping out of a second-story window.

More from Jon Webb:Arsenic and arson: An infamous Evansville murder trial

McCart tried to ignore the stories and focus on the situation at hand. Was some weirdo gallivanting through the Posey County wilds and randomly peppering cars with bullets? Or was this gabby kid making it all up?

They decided to haul Wallace in for a polygraph test that next Monday. The results came in: according to the machine, Wallace was telling the truth.

“Still, to this day, I believe he was able to beat the polygraph,” McCart said. “I think he shot the hole through the vehicle himself, hid the weapon and called it in. He was just bored to death and wanted to get attention. He had that kind of personality.”

Retired Indiana State Police detective Larry McCart


Wallace eventually graduated to residential burglaries. Once, in Blairsville, he even ransacked his own mother’s house.

McCart should know. He lived about yards away.

There aren’t many advantages to living next to a petty criminal — unless you’re the one tasked with keeping an eye on him. 

“I was trying to stay in touch with what he was doing,” McCart said. “He was just that much of a thorn in our side.”

There were obvious detriments, too. Around that time, McCart was doing a lot of undercover work: controlled drug buys, handling informants, etc. To fit in, he traded his clean-cut policeman look for a baby afro and glorious s ’stache.

Retired Indiana State Police Detective Larry McCart during his undercover days.

The work meant he was away from home a lot. And he knew Wallace was a brazen criminal. So brazen, McCart worried on some nights, that he might break into the home of a state police detective.

“I didn’t share that kind of stuff with (my wife),” he said.

'I know that guy'

Police also suspected Wallace of smuggling heroin into an area jail. When prisoners asked their families to bring them shoes, Wallace would hollow out the soles, stuff the drugs inside, and have the family members walk right in.

Once, when they were trying to serve him a warrant around , troopers went to several houses where he occasionally crashed. At one, a state policeman showed a picture of Wallace to the resident.

“I think I know that guy,” the resident said. “But he’s not here and I don’t know where he’s at.”

The trooper thanked him and left. Later, he realized the resident was Wallace himself. He’d just dyed his hair and grown a fresh beard.

“He’s that gutsy,” McCart said. “He can stand there and lie to a guy holding his own photograph.”

Patrick Gilligan

The switch

Despite all the problems Wallace caused him over the years, McCart was still surprised when he got the call at his new home in Orleans on Jan. 14,

A young man killed an entire family, officials in Evansville told him. You know him. Could you come down and tell us what kind of guy we’re dealing with?

“The things I investigated him on were sneaky. Trying to outsmart system, break into a house and get what he could to sell,” McCart said. “But I did not think he was capable of … that.”

Police caught Wallace when a witness saw him crawling into the attic of an elderly woman’s home on West Illinois Street. When police came to arrest him, the woman had no idea a killer had been stalking a few feet above her head.

Theresa Gilligan

He looked like blonde Charles Manson, the kind of killer people see in nightmares. But there were still traces of the person McCart first met in

“During pre-trial, he requested a polygraph. He beat the polygraph for us and I think that gave him the confidence to try to demand a polygraph on the Gilligan case,” McCart said. “He had that kind of arrogant intelligence. I really think he thought if he could get that polygraph, he could beat it and might be able to avoid these murder charges.”

He didn’t.

Contact columnist Jon Webb at [email protected]

Sours: https://www.courierpress.com/story/opinion/columnists/jon-webb//02/21/donald-ray-wallace-evansville-mass-murderer-detective-larry-mccart//
Evansville firefighter killed in shooting

Wallace v. State

N.E.2d ()

Donald Ray WALLACE, Jr., Appellant (Defendant below), v. STATE of Indiana, Appellee (Plaintiff below).

No. S

Supreme Court of Indiana.

December 6,

Rehearing Denied March 3,

* William G. Smock, Terre Haute, for appellant.

Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Ind., Joseph N. Stevenson, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellee.

PIVARNIK, Justice.

Defendant-Appellant Donald Ray Wallace, Jr., was found guilty by a jury in the Vigo Circuit Court of four Counts of Murder. The death penalty was sought on grounds that the killings were knowingly done in commission of a burglary and that Defendant had killed more than one person. The jury found Defendant guilty and recommended the death penalty in all four cases. The trial court judge subsequently agreed with the findings of the jury and sentenced Defendant to death. Nine issues are presented for our consideration in this Direct Appeal as follows:

1. Rulings by the trial court in regard to Defendant's competency to stand trial;

2. Denial of motion for change of venue from the judge;

3. Permitting a state witness to testify when that witness was incompetent;

4. Denial of motions for mistrial following references in the testimony to Defendant's past criminal record;

5. Alleged improper search and seizure of items from automobile driven by Defendant;

* 6. Denial of Defendant's request to have certain questions asked of police officer witnesses;

7. Alleged improper testimony of rebuttal witness;

8. Error in presentence report;

9. Constitutional infirmity of Indiana's Death Penalty Statute.

The facts tend to show that on January 14, , Indiana State Trooper, Thomas Snyder, was called to the home of Ralph Hendricks which had been reported burglarized. In connection with the investigation, Trooper Snyder went to the Gilligans' house, next to Hendricks' house, to inquire whether the residents therein might have seen or heard anything unusual. The window to the Gilligans' back door was broken. Snyder checked inside the house and discovered four dead bodies in the family room. They were Patrick and Teresa Gilligan and their two children, ages four and five. Mrs. Gilligan had her hands tied behind her, and the two children were tied together. Coroner, David Wilson, M.D., testified that the cause of all four deaths, as listed on the inquests, was brain damage from gunshot wounds.

The evidence also showed that Defendant Donald Ray Wallace, Jr., was seen driving a blue Plymouth automobile on the night in question. This automobile belonged to Richard Milligan. Milligan and Milligan's girlfriend, Debbie Durham, were known to have committed several prior burglaries using this same automobile. However, Richard Milligan was in jail on burglary charges this particular night. Witnesses recalled seeing this automobile in the neighborhood about the time the murders occurred.

Donna Madison was at the home of her sister, Debbie Durham, the night in question. Earlier that evening she witnessed Wallace driving the blue Plymouth. Between p.m. and p.m., Wallace returned to Debbie's home, and Donna heard him ask for matches. He found a cigarette lighter, and Donna saw him in the backyard burning the jacket he had been carrying over his shoulder upon arrival. Neighbor Sherry Grayson saw a fire at the same time and saw a man with shoulder length hair, which was characteristic of Wallace, standing by it. Officer John Crosser recovered the remains of the jacket and other items found on the ground. Among these items were a set of wedding rings without stones in them and some fragments of glass. State Police Specialist Oliver examined the glass and found the pieces fit into a pattern matching the hole in Gilligans' window.

On the evening in question, Defendant Wallace and Debbie Durham had Carl Durham take pictures of them with many of the items taken from the Gilligan and Hendrick residences. The pictures, also showing money and pistols connected with these burglaries, were admitted into evidence.

Debbie Durham gave Serologist William Kune the blue jeans worn by Wallace the night of the crime, upon which Kune found type AB human blood. Wallace had blood type O, but Mrs. Gilligan and one of the children had blood type AB. Kune also found type B blood on a brown cotton glove, identified as one of a set Wallace wore while burglarizing homes. Mr. Gilligan had type B blood.

William Madison, brother of Debbie and Donna, came to Debbie Durham's home the evening in question and saw the Defendant come in. Defendant, wearing a gun in a holster, showed William Madison a briefcase with a couple of guns in it. Defendant also had in his possession a CB, a police scanner, and some rings. That same night Defendant attempted to sell to Randy Rhinehart some guns, a CB, and a scanner. Several witnesses testified that Debbie Durham displayed to them pieces of jewelry, which were later traced to the Gilligans. Debbie gave one of the rings to Officer O'Risky. It was identified by Dorothy Sahm, Teresa Gilligan's mother, as belonging to Teresa. A jeweler that had sized the ring and kept pictures of it also identified it as belonging to Teresa. There was a great deal of property in addition to that recited above which was found in Wallace's and * Durham's possession and which was traced to the Gilligans. Much of the property recovered that night was also traced to the Hendricks' residence. Entry was gained in both of the homes by putting tape on the window and then breaking it in, in a manner that reduced the sound of breaking glass. Wallace and Milligan were known to gain entry for purposes of burglary in this manner.

Friends of Defendant, Mark Boyles and Anita Hoeche, testified they received a phone call on January 15th from Defendant who said he was in trouble and in need of a ride. While riding in the car, Defendant told them he had gotten too greedy the night before. He said he had broken into one house and never should have gone to the next house because he got caught there. He told them after he got caught a man in the house was giving him trouble, and he had to tie up the entire family. He said the little girl was crying and screaming, and it was bothering him. He felt he could not let the children grow up with the trauma of not having parents, and he did not "want to see the kids went [sic] through the tragedy of seeing their parents being killed," so he killed them also. (Record at ) He said the woman was screaming, and he had to shut her up. Later that night Defendant, while hiding in the attic of Hoeche's house, was arrested.

Wallace's statements coincided with those given by Debbie Durham. Debbie Durham testified that when Wallace visited her on January 14th, around p.m., he immediately took his clothes off and gave them to her so he could change. On his blue jeans there was a piece of fleshy-whitish-red matter. Debbie asked what it was, and Wallace stated it had to be a piece of brain because he had shot the residents, who had caught him, in the head. He told her a man had come in from the garage and surprised him. They struggled, and Wallace made him bring in the rest of the family. He said he tied up the man, made the woman tie up the children, and then Wallace tied her up. He shot the man in the head after possibly breaking the man's neck in the struggle. He said he then shot the woman twice. The children were crying for the mother, so he shot each one of them once. He said he shot the adults because they could identify him.


Defendant raises several issues concerning his mental competency to stand trial. Four hearings were held before the trial judge found Defendant was competent to understand the proceedings and assist his counsel in his defense. Defendant claims the trial judge's finding was error. The first hearing was instituted by the trial judge during a pretrial motion because the judge detected in Defendant's demeanor reasonable grounds to believe that he lacked competency to proceed. The court notified the parties of his concern and then appointed two psychiatrists, Dr. Larry Davis and Dr. John Kooiker, to examine Defendant. Their subsequent reports stated their opinions that Defendant was incompetent to proceed with trial because he was suffering from acute paranoid schizophrenia.

At a hearing held in May, , the doctors described elaborate delusions expressed by Defendant of plots against him. He had told the doctors about his belief that the CIA and Masons were attempting to place him before a firing squad to prevent his release of secret matters, including information on the Iranian hostage situation. He expressed concern about others plotting against him, including his attorney and court personnel. He imagined radio-listening devices were planted in his cell and in the room where the psychiatrists interviewed him. He expressed suspicion of the psychiatrists and of all those with whom he came in contact. The appointed doctors concluded Defendant was unable to assist counsel at the time or to participate in and understand the trial proceedings. Each stated Defendant's apparent condition would be very difficult to feign. The State's two witnesses, Defendant's cellmate and a member of the Sheriff's department, testified Defendant displayed these * mannerisms only at selective times, the implication being Defendant was feigning the psychosis. After taking the matter under advisement, the judge found, in a May, Order, that Defendant was incompetent to stand trial. In that Order the judge stated that despite evidence to the contrary, his decision was based on an overwhelming evidence of incompetency given by the doctors.

Later, pursuant to Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ), the Superintendent of Logansport State Hospital certified to the court that Defendant had now attained competency to stand trial. His certification was based upon a Dr. Matheu's opinion. However, the hearing scheduled pursuant to this certification was continued when Drs. Davis and Kooiker opined that Defendant needed further evaluation and treatment. After several ensuing months of treatment with Thorazine, Dr. Kooiker reported that Defendant had become oriented with time, place, and person. Both psychiatrists considered Defendant competent at this point to stand trial.

However, at the second hearing Defendant appeared too heavily sedated from the medication. The psychiatrists testified that Defendant's dosage of psychotic medication could be modified such that he would maintain competency, but not experience the sedative side-effects. Over Defendant's objection, the court ruled that Defendant's competency depended upon an adjustment in his medication, and ordered Defendant back to Wishard Hospital for further treatment. However, by the next and third hearing on January 16, , Drs. Kooiker, Davis, and Moore opined Defendant was incompetent to proceed with trial. All three psychiatrists testified Defendant was again suffering from symptoms of schizophrenia and that the suggested modified treatment from the previous hearing had failed. One of the psychiatrists characterized Defendant as a chronic liar, but the general consensus of the doctors was that Defendant was not feigning the psychosis. Dr. Moore testified that if Defendant was faking, he was "one of the best damn actors he had ever seen." (Record at ) Once again, the court found Defendant incompetent to stand trial and ordered him committed under Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ).

Seven months later, in February, , the State moved for another competency hearing, informing the court it could produce evidence that Defendant had been faking his psychosis. The court indicated he would hold another hearing, stating he had suspected Defendant had been feigning his mental illness. On June 16, , over Defendant's objection, another competency hearing was held.

The State produced at the hearing several witnesses and documentary evidence purporting to show Defendant feigned his mental illness from the beginning. More specifically, the State introduced letters Defendant had written to Debbie, his girlfriend, during the time between his arrest and the first pretrial court appearance at which his competency was put in issue. These letters indicated a full understanding of what he was doing and were intended to show he purposefully feigned incompetency to delay his trial and frustrate the State's attempt to have him sentenced to death. In the letters he discusses Debbie's loyalty to him, their sex lives, and his feelings toward his attorney. He wrote he had a higher I.Q. than his attorney and so was planning to hire an attorney from San Francisco with the assistance of his uncle. His uncle would furnish the money for an attorney with the reputation for gaining acquittals for persons charged with murder. He said he was studying from materials furnished to him by a friend who was a professor from a local law school. His studies concentrated on suppression of evidence and the art of cross-examination. He indicated he was becoming very well informed on these subjects so that he would be in a position to attack the State in court and frustrate their case. Defendant also told Debbie, who was in jail on a burglary charge herself, that she would not have to worry if she went to the Women's Prison because he had connections in the prison that would get her special consideration. * He expressed in the letters a knowledge of the legal system and the procedures he was facing and would face in his desire to undermine the system. Notably, no reference is made to the delusions which convinced his psychiatrist of his incompetency except in the last letter written just before the first pre-trial hearing. This letter was written in his psychotic style, referring to the secret service and Masons being after him. The trial judge suspected it was written in preparation for the upcoming hearing and fit into Defendant's plan to launch his incompetency plan.

A former jailmate of Defendant testified that sometime in February or March, , Defendant told him he was using the Masons story to get out of going to trial and stated Defendant would act psychotic only when non-prisoners were present. Two jailmates from Vigo County, Lofston and St. John testified that during Defendant would act perfectly normal unless the doctors were around. Defendant told him he was fooling the psychiatrist by telling them he was collaberating with the Germans. Lofston testified that sometimes the Defendant would give his medication to Lofston and other inmates, which would make them drowsy. St. John testified Defendant told him he was pretending to be crazy to evade trial. Defendant told St. John he saved up his medication for a hearing so he would be extremely drowsy in the courtroom.

Several of the staff members from Logansport State Hospital, where Defendant had been for most of the preceding two years, testified in the same manner. Robert Cosgray testified that when Defendant first came to the hospital he acted psychotic but shortly thereafter admitted to Cosgray that he was feigning his mental illness. Defendant later denied this statement and told Cosgray that it was Cosgray's word against his. He said he would rather spend his life in the hospital than go to the electric chair. William Hardesty testified Defendant exhibited his psychosis early in , but later Defendant told Hardesty that he liked to "beat people at their own game." (Record at ) Further, Defendant told Hardesty that the longer he drags this out the less chance the State had of convicting him. (Record at ) Others at Logansport, James Campbell, Deborah Illes, Wilma McLaughlin, Richard Younce, and William Conn, each testified that during the two years of Defendant's hospitalization they saw Defendant's alleged psychotic delusions manifested very rarely. He appeared to have psychotic delusions perhaps once or twice, and then only when Dr. Keating was present or about to enter the room. Several of the staff members stated that Defendant gave them a contrasting impression; he was a sharp pool and card player.

There were also letters introduced into evidence from Defendant's friend, Cathy Kellams. He had written her from September, to March, The letters reveal no psychotic symptoms and include only a discussion of an upcoming hearing on "this insanity shit." (Record at ) Kellams testified that she also received one letter from Defendant in which he threatened her if she testified against him, but she stated she did not have the letter and could not produce it.

After hearing all of this evidence, the trial court concluded that Defendant was faking his psychosis and that he was in fact competent to stand trial. Defendant later asked the trial court to order that all of his medication be withdrawn from him, but the trial court found this to be a medical matter and denied the motion.

Defendant claims the court had no authority to institute the last competency hearing on the motion of the State. Defendant contends that the only way an additional hearing can be ordered is by notice from the institution that Defendant has now become competent to stand trial. Defendant has misconstrued the role of two separate statutory judicial proceedings. The first proceeding, which refers to the competence of a criminal Defendant to stand trial, was governed by Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ) [repealed effective September 1, ; replaced by * Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. )]. The other proceeding comes about from the regular involuntary civil commitment proceedings pursuant to Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ) [amended by P.L. , § 2; now Ind. Code § (Burns Supp. )]. The Title 35 Statute provides a means by which the issue of Defendant's incompetence to stand criminal trial may be raised and tested. This statute requires the court to hold a competency hearing whenever it has reasonable grounds for believing Defendant lacks the ability to understand or assist counsel. If the defendant is found incompetent, this custody is transferred to the Department of Mental Health. Title 35 also requires that after a nine-month period, defendant may not be retained absent a procedure for civil commitment under the Title 16 Statute. Ind. Code § (Burns Supp. ) provides:

"Whenever the defendant attains the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of his defense, the department of mental health, through the superintendent of the appropriate psychiatric institution, shall certify that fact to the proper court, which shall enter an order directing the sheriff to return the defendant. The court may enter such order immediately after being sufficiently advised of the defendant's attainment of the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of his defense." (emphasis added.)

The trial court properly ordered a hearing to inquire into Defendant's competency at the first pretrial hearing when it appeared there were reasonable grounds for believing Defendant was incompetent. An accused has a constitutional right not to be tried if he does not have the ability to comprehend the proceedings or to assist in his defense. Pate v. Robinson (), U.S. , 86 S. Ct. , 15 L. Ed. 2d However, the court further had the authority and duty to hold a hearing to determine the competency of Defendant when the court had been notified that Defendant had attained the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of his defense.

Defendant contends that when he was committed to the Department of Mental Health, pursuant to Ind. Code § , that the court lost jurisdiction to further inquire into his current competency to stand trial. This is not the law. When a Defendant is found mentally incompetent to stand trial, the trial court does not lose jurisdiction under Title 35, but retains jurisdiction to reconsider the matter at any time. Marx v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d ; Finkenbiner v. Dowd (), Ind. , N.E.2d , reh. denied. The trial of a defendant can be deferred because of a determination of his mental inability to stand trial. Meanwhile, the State continues to hold him pursuant to the probable cause that gave rise to his arrest and the charges filed against him. However, mental illness may be prolonged, and it is considered repugnant in our legal system to hold a person indefinitely pursuant to an arrest warrant without trial. So, a judicial determination must be provided to determine that he is mentally ill and gravely disabled, or dangerously in need of custody and treatment pursuant to Title See Wilson v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d A Title 16 commitment determination of insanity is not a determination on the issue of a defendant's competence to stand trial and does not affect the jurisdiction to conduct criminal trial proceedings. Marx, supra. This is made apparent by the two distinct requirements of the Title 35 Statute. First, Title 35 requires the Department of Mental Health notify the court whenever in the opinion of that institution the defendant has attained the ability to understand the proceedings and is able to assist in the preparation of his defense. Second, it requires the trial judge to hold a hearing when he becomes aware of facts that reasonably appear to show defendant is now in a position to return for trial. This Court has held that the decision, whether to hold a hearing on competence to stand trial, lies in the province of the trial judge and should be disturbed * on review only upon a showing of clear error. Malo v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d Here the trial judge was informed by the prosecutor that the State intended to show that Defendant had been feigning his psychosis from the beginning. These were sufficient grounds for the court to institute a fourth hearing and inquire further into the subject. The trial court committed no error in instituting and conducting the hearing and in making findings based on the evidence presented to him. On review this Court will not reweigh the evidence and will not overturn the trial court's factual determination unless it is not supported by the facts and their inferences. Gosnell v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d The trial court was not bound by the experts' testimony. Howard v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d There was a great deal of evidence, from a number of disinterested witnesses, that Defendant had been feigning his psychosis and which justified the trial court's finding that Defendant was competent.

Defendant claims he was denied due process of law because the Indiana statute on competency hearings does not state the burden of proof. He makes no specific allegations that the competency hearings were in fact unfair or that he was misled, surprised, or suffered from any misallocation of a burden. He cites a line of Illinois cases which held unconstitutional an Illinois statute on competency to stand trial and which allocated the burden of proof to the accused. People v. McCullum (), 66 Ill. 2d , 5 Ill.Dec. , N.E.2d ; People v. Thompson (), 36 Ill. 2d , N.E.2d 97; People v. Bender (), 20 Ill. 2d 45, N.E.2d However, Indiana's statute, Ind. Code § , does not allocate the burden to the Defendant. Our statute provides that whenever the court has reasonable grounds for believing the defendant lacks the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in the preparation of his defense, he shall immediately hold a hearing and determine whether the defendant has that ability. The statute further provides that any evidence relative to defendant's abilities along those lines may be introduced. In a situation with a similar statute, the Missouri Court of Appeals in Missouri v. Clark (), Mo. Ct. App., S.W.2d , trans. denied, declared that the only burden which exists rests on the trial judge to satisfy himself that the accused is or is not competent to stand trial. With regard to our competency statute, we maintain the same reasoning. There is no burden on the defendant to prove himself incompetent.

In the instant case, Defendant was not denied due process. The judge exhibited his understanding of the statutory law and his inclination to follow it. When it became apparent to him Defendant appeared to lack sufficient understanding, he ceased further proceedings and took the steps indicated by the Title 35 Statute. Despite the judge's reservations and doubt due to a conflict in the evidence, indicating Defendant may have been feigning his mental illness, the judge determined that the evidence of Defendant's incompetence outweighed those doubts and found Defendant incompetent. Thereafter, the judge ordered Defendant committed for treatment. Only when the judge was presented the very strong evidence in the fourth and final hearing did he change his ruling. Defendant, therefore, makes no showing of a lack of due process in the provisions of the statute and the ways in which they were applied to him by the trial court.

Appellant also claims the trial court erred in regard to the fourth and last competency hearing because the judge permitted the State to present evidence which was not newly discovered and that could have been introduced at earlier competency hearings but was not. Defendant is referring to the evidence introduced by the State of witnesses indicating Defendant was feigning his psychosis from the beginning and was determined to be incompetent to stand trial. Defendant's argument seems to be that this evidence was stale and not probative of his mental state in * We do not agree. It certainly was relative to the trial court's determination of competency in that Defendant had expressly been carrying out a plan of feigning psychosis all during these proceedings. It is true Defendant's actions and attitude in could not be conclusive of Defendant's mental condition in However, the fact that the same psychiatrist noted the same indication of psychosis in Defendant in as in and , and that other witnesses believed for good reason Defendant was feigning these indicators, was clearly relevant to the judge's duty to determine competency in In this light, the witnesses' testimony attacked by Defendant was not stale since it tended to show a pattern over the period of more than two years. It helped the trial judge to assess Defendant's true state of mental health under consideration in In matters bearing on the related issue of insanity at the time of the offense, this Court has held that all evidence is admissible which relates to Defendant's behavior or environment and has some logical reference to the issue of his sanity. Howard v. State, supra. It was, therefore, not an abuse of discretion for the trial court to admit evidence of earlier and successful attempts to feign incompetence which were in fact based on the same symptoms.

After Defendant was ruled competent to stand trial he filed a "Motion To Determine The Propriety Of The Defendant Receiving Medication." (Record at ) The motion stated that since the time the court determined Defendant competent to stand trial, Defendant's prescription for antipsychotic medication had been renewed by the Vigo County jail physician and was being administered. In his motion, defense counsel stated his concern that the medication might affect Defendant's ability to assist counsel and understand the proceedings and that it might affect his demeanor, thereby prejudicing the jury against him. The motion also stated that if the drugs were necessary to render Defendant competent, that such chemical competency was not proper. The motion went on to allege the court could not consistently decide Defendant was feigning and at the same time leave him on antipsychotic medication. He, therefore, requested the court to determine and rule whether the medication was necessary to maintain Defendant's competency and whether such chemical competency was permitted under Indiana law. He then requested the court to order the Sheriff to halt the administration of the drugs if it was determined that drugs were not necessary. In responding to this motion the court generally found that this was a medical and not a legal issue. The court responded with written findings and conclusions that counsel's concern that the medication was rendering Defendant incompetent was unfounded since he had just been declared competent. The court ruled that although he believed an accused could constitutionally be made chemically competent, he did not believe Defendant required the medication to be competent. Therefore, he would not rule specifically on chemical competency since that question was not before him. The court did find, however, that Defendant understood the effects of the drugs and could competently discuss with his psychiatrist whether or not to continue taking it. It was a medical and not a legal issue. Defendant does not claim, nor does the record reveal, that he was in fact medicated at trial or that medication altered his demeanor in any manner. He shows no prejudice from the trial court's ruling. Furthermore there is no showing nor a claim by the Defendant that any mishap occurred during trial that required the trial judge to take any action with regard to the issue raised in this motion. He merely states the trial judge erred by not making a definite ruling at the time the motion was presented. No error is shown on this issue.


Appellant claims the trial court erred by denying him a change of judge requested about the time of his fourth and last competency hearing. Defendant had already been granted an initial change of venue from Vanderburgh to Vigo County. * The basis for the motion for change of judge was an allegation of bias and prejudice. It was supported by a letter written by the judge in in which he inquired of the Department of Mental Health information regarding a determination of competency of the Defendant to stand trial. In the letter the judge referred to concerns expressed by jailers about an alleged escape scheme and coded letters being exchanged by Wallace and a friend. He also expressed the fact that this was a very serious matter involving four murders and that there was some evidence that Defendant may be feigning his alleged incompetency. In this motion Defendant also referred to the trial judge's expression at the fourth hearing that the judge had had doubts all along that Defendant may be feigning his incompetency.

The posture of the trial court for a change of judge at this point in the trial is a discretionary matter and a trial court will be found in error on appeal where it is shown that the judge was clearly biased and prejudiced. Such clear bias or prejudice only exists where there is an undisputed claim or where the judge has expressed an opinion on the merits of the controversy before him. Holguin v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d ; Pollard v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d , reh. denied. In the letter to the Department of Mental Health the trial judge expressed concern over allegations, relayed to him by jailers and the prosecuting attorney, regarding an escape attempt and conflicting indications that there was an issue of competency before him. The letter was written on May 19, , about the time of the first competency hearing in May The record shows the trial court stated that there was some evidence that the psychosis was being feigned but still found, in favor of the weight of evidence, that Defendant was incompetent. Although the trial judge stated that he had these doubts, he still followed the law by finding Defendant incompetent and ordering him to be committed on three different occasions. Only after hearing very strong evidence from a number of witnesses that Defendant was in fact competent and was feigning his psychosis did the trial judge change his findings. Defendant does not show that the court was biased on the issue of his guilt or innocence nor is there any showing that the conduct of the trial on the merits was affected in any manner by the trial judge's bias. Prejudice must be shown by trial conduct of the judge and not inferred from his subjective views. U.S. v. Menk ( 7th Cir.), F.2d , cert. denied (), U.S. , 89 S. Ct. , 23 L. Ed. 2d There is no error on this issue.


It is Appellant's contention the trial court erred in permitting witness, Richard Milligan, to testify based on the questionable mental competence of Milligan. Milligan had been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and had a history of hallucinating. The trial court conducted a hearing outside the presence of the jury for voir dire examination of Milligan and found him to be competent. Milligan testified that his condition was being controlled by anti-psychotic and mood-elevating drugs and that he was not then suffering from the symptoms. He stated that as long as he took the prescribed drugs he would not have the symptoms. His testimony was that he had not been hallucinating since the previous winter when he had been off of his medication for a few days. He said that he was able to tell when he was having problems and was hallucinating. He testified he was taking his drugs and was not having any problems at that time. His testimony involved his commission with Defendant and a third person of several burglaries in which they taped the glass before breaking it. This was the same manner in which the glass was broken in this case. His testimony was that the Defendant was the "brains" of their operation and had devised the system of entry without detection. Entry was gained in this manner in the prior crimes about which he testified. Thus, his testimony tended to show a common plan or scheme, identifying Defendant as the perpetrator of the instant crime. It * appears the witness inadvertently referred to some other burglaries he, Defendant, and a third person had committed. This court will not disturb a trial court's determination of a witness's competency to testify if the court had an opportunity to observe the witness and if the evidence on his competency is susceptible of conflicting inferences. Page v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d In Gosnell v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d , this Court held that it is a general rule that witnesses are clothed with a presumption of competency and when that competency is placed in issue it is the duty of the trial court to schedule a hearing in order to properly determine whether the witness is in fact competent to testify. We further stated that the trial court has wide discretion in disposing of petitions of this kind and will be reversed only if it has clearly abused that discretion. Here the trial court did conduct such a hearing, was able to observe this witness and make a determination as to his apparent incompetency. He was also able to observe whether or not the witness's competency was in such doubt that further investigation such as examination by a psychiatrist was necessary. Milligan, in fact, testified in cogent, narrative style and responded to questions while relating facts in both voir dire and before the jury. There is no showing that this witness demonstrated any incompetency before the jury and, of course, the jury had before them all of the information of his mental problems and was able to determine his credibility based on these facts. Accordingly, there is no error in this issue.


Defendant claims the court committed reversible error when it refused to grant a mistrial in two instances in which witnesses volunteered statements referring to Defendant's past criminal involvements. Richard Milligan testified that he and Defendant committed three burglaries together in December, Milligan testified Defendant was the leader in each of the three burglaries and Defendant used masking tape on the windows to reduce shattering and noise. Because tape was also used on the Gilligans' window, this testimony was admitted under the common scheme or plan exception to the general rule against admittance of evidence of prior crimes. Defendant has raised no question about the admission of these three offenses of burglary and does not claim that the use of masking tape insufficiently constituted a common scheme. His complaint comes with reference to the answer Milligan gave to the prosecutor's question, "I guess you testified that your first burglary was on the 25th?" Milligan's answer was, "We did some before then, but I didn't get charged with them." (Record at ) Defendant then moved for a mistrial. Also, State's witness, Mark Boyles, testified that he and Anita Hoeche drove Defendant around Evansville the day after the murders. Defendant was a suspect by then. The state questioned Boyles as follows:

Q. "Okay. When you got when the defendant got in the car, did anyone ask him what the police were after him about?" A. "Uhh no. Anita had an idea when we went to go pick him up. I seen his picture on the news that night and knew the police were after him, but I didn't know what for. I knew he had been in the penitentiary before and was ."

(Record at ) Defendant moved for a mistrial on the basis of the reference to the defendant having been in the penitentiary. Defendant claims both of these statements by these witnesses prejudiced him at trial and during the death penalty proceedings. Both motions for mistrial were denied by the trial court but he admonished the jury to disregard the unresponsive answers. The granting of a mistrial lies within the sound discretion of the trial court, and its determination will be reversed where an abuse of that discretion can be established. Ramos v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d , reh. denied; Chambers v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d , reh. denied. A mistrial is an extreme remedy and is * warranted only where lesser curative measures will not suffice. Furthermore, even if error occurred, it may be harmless if the evidence admitted was merely cumulative and the conviction was otherwise supported by independent evidence. Hazzard v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d

The trial court ruled that Milligan's reference to the other burglaries could not have substantially prejudiced Defendant in light of Milligan's proper testimony about the three burglaries showing a common scheme. Defense counsel asked a previous State's witness, who spoke with the Defendant the day after the murders, if Defendant was concerned about the sentence he could receive since he had already been in so much trouble. The witness had responded in the affirmative. Mark Boyles' statement that Defendant had been in the penitentiary occurred after defense counsel asked this question of the witness. Also, Carl Durham, had testified earlier that Defendant wanted the photograph of himself and the drugs, money, and guns to send to his friends in prison. Moreover, Milligan had already testified about the December burglaries he and Defendant had committed together. Given that the jury had already heard considerable testimony, strongly implying Defendant's active criminal past, it does not appear that the statements by the two witnesses could have substantially influenced the verdict. Any error committed was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt since the testimony was cumulative of a substantial amount of other evidence. There was also substantial evidence of Defendant's involvement in this crime, the seriousness of which far outweighed any general references to previous burglaries or time spent in a prison institution. Chapman v. California (), U.S. 18, 87 S. Ct. , 17 L. Ed. 2d , reh. denied. There is no error demonstrated by this issue.


Defendant contends the court erred in denying his motion to suppress evidence seized during the search of Richard Milligan's Plymouth automobile. The automobile was searched after a warrant was obtained and Milligan's consent to search the automobile was obtained. Appellant does not contest the issuance of the search warrant to search the interior of the automobile as being without probable cause nor does he allege that the search of the interior of the automobile was improperly conducted pursuant to the search warrant. His only claim is that the initial seizure of the automobile was improper and that therefore any evidence obtained from it thereafter was tainted and inadmissible.

The automobile belonged to Richard Milligan and had been used by Milligan and Defendant in the December burglaries. However, after they were both arrested and incarcerated only Defendant was released on bond. Milligan gave Defendant permission to drive the automobile, which he did during January and on the night of these murders. The morning after the murders, Debbie drove the car to the grocery store. After breakfast Defendant left without the automobile and without telling Debbie. It was apparent at that time that he was a suspect and that the police would be looking for him. Debbie drove the automobile to an apartment on Eichel Street to sell some furniture. She was arrested there, and the police took custody of the automobile, having it towed and impounded. Then they obtained a search warrant and searched the interior of the automobile, finding many items traced to the Gilligan and Hendricks burglaries.

There is a legitimate question as to whether Defendant had standing to contest the search of this automobile. The owner of the automobile had given consent to the police to search it. Defendant's possession was only temporary, and he had apparently abandoned it at the time of the search, and it was in the possession of a third person. It is questionable that he had a legitimate expectation of privacy in it at the time it was seized. Pollard v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d However, beyond this question there is ample evidence that police had probable cause to * seize the vehicle since they had many facts justifying them in suspecting that it had been used in the commission of these crimes. First, the police knew the automobile belonged to Milligan and had been used in previous burglaries by Milligan, the Defendant, and a third person. Second, the police had early on that morning learned that entry into the Gilligan house had been gained by the same method used by Milligan and the Defendant in the past. They were therefore familiar with the Plymouth automobile from previous investigations of Defendant and Milligan and knew it had been used in this manner before. Defendant was the only suspect because Milligan was in jail at the time. Third, there were also witnesses who indicated this automobile was in the Gilligan neighborhood at the time of the murders. Next, Donna Madison had told police officers earlier that Defendant had come to the house in this automobile in possession of guns and jewelry and burned his jacket the night in question. However, it is not known with certainty whether the police who did the towing actually knew about this particular statement. There is ample evidence, however, that the police had information that gave them sufficient probable cause to take the vehicle into possession at the time they arrested the driver. This is true particularly since it would have involved leaving the vehicle on a public street accessible to the suspect who was then at large while obtaining a warrant. The mobility of the vehicle has long been a justification for warrantless seizures based on probable cause. These were exigent circumstances that justified the trial court in finding the seizure was justified. Chambers v. Maroney (), U.S. 42, 90 S. Ct. , 26 L. Ed. 2d , reh. denied. Stuck v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d


Appellant next assigns as error the trial court's granting to the State a motion in limine regarding two questions Defendant requested to be asked of a State witness. The court granted the motion in limine, but the Defendant preserved the question by attempting to elicit the testimony from the police officer, the State's witness, and was prohibited from doing so by the trial court. It is this final ruling denying his attempt to introduce this evidence which is alleged as error.

After Defendant's arrest, he requested a polygraph test and requested that he be asked two questions: whether he was present when the murders occurred and did he pull the trigger. The State objected to any mention of offers to take polygraph tests, and then the defense sought to introduce evidence that Defendant had said he wanted to be asked these two questions, omitting the context of the offer to take a polygraph test. During the testimony of the police officer, Defendant requested permission to ask him if it was not a fact that he had requested these two questions be asked of Defendant after his arrest. Although it is not clear, apparently Defendant's purpose in requesting these questions was to give him an opportunity to state he was not in the Gilligan house at the time of the murders but was in the Hendricks' house committing robbery. This would imply his accomplice had gone into the Gilligan house and committed the murders. He is not claiming he was prevented from putting testimony in that regard into evidence. He is only complaining that he could not show to the jury that he made a request for those two questions, and the request was refused.

The State's contention is that any evidence tending to show that Defendant sought to have these questions asked of him was both irrelevant and prejudicial as self-serving utterances. We agree. Defendant's argument is that answers to these questions would not have been self-serving. He argues the answers would have put him at the scene of a burglary of the neighboring house and would have been an admission against interest since it would be tantamount to a guilty plea to burglary. It is apparent, of course, being found guilty of burglary of one house would be far preferable to being found guilty of being in the Gilligan house and * committing four murders for which the death penalty was sought.

The trial court is accorded with wide latitude in ruling on the relevancy of evidence. Snider v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d , reh. denied. This latitude is vested in the trial court to determine the probative value of evidence vis-a-vis its prejudicial impact. If the offered evidence is only marginally relevant, it is within the sound discretion of the trial court to determine its admissibility. Chittenden v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d 86; Marchand v. State (), Ind. App., N.E.2d , reh. denied. Defendant fails to demonstrate the relevancy of his request of these questions to the determination of guilt or punishment for the crime under investigation. It is speculative, at best, that it would have allowed him a substantial opportunity to prove he was in the other house at the time of the murders. If such were the facts, this did not foreclose him an opportunity to bring such facts to the jury. We therefore see no abuse of discretion in the trial court in denying his efforts to get the questions asked.


Appellant next claims it was error for the trial court to permit the testimony of the mother of Theresa Gilligan regarding the ownership of a pair of gloves. During its investigation the police found a pair of brown jersey gloves at the scene of the murders. The gloves, which were bloodstained, were introduced by the State. During its case in chief the defense introduced a pair of Isotoner gloves. On Friday, the defense called Donna Madison who testified that the Isotoner gloves belonged to Defendant, that he had been wearing them the night of the murders and that she found them in her house after the murders. The purpose of the defense presenting this evidence was to promote the inference that Defendant was next door burglarizing the neighbors' house. That is, if Defendant wore Isotoners and brought them to Donna Madison's house, then the brown jerseys at the scene must have belonged to an accomplice and not to the Defendant. After Donna Madison's testimony on Friday, the Defendant succeeded in getting the Isotoner gloves placed into evidence. During the weekend recess, the State learned from Mrs. Gilligan's mother, Mrs. Sahm, that the Isotoners belonged to her daughter who had been wearing them the night she was murdered. Thus, she could testify that the gloves in Donna Madison's house were brought there by the Defendant and were the property of one of the victims of this crime. The record shows that the gloves were rather distinctive in that they had tan leather strips on each finger and thumb and across the back, and also had a decorative label. Mrs. Sahm was able absolutely to identify the gloves as belonging to her daughter and further testify that her daughter was wearing those gloves on the night she was murdered.

On Monday morning when the trial resumed the defense brought police officers who corroborated Donna Madison's testimony by stating that she had told them during the investigation that the Isotoner gloves found in her house belonged to Defendant. The State then called Mrs. Sahm in rebuttal to give her testimony indicated above. Defendant claims the State did not inform him of Mrs. Sahm's expected rebuttal testimony, although it did communicate with defense counsel on other matters. Defendant asserts that because he was not armed with the knowledge of Mrs. Sahm's statement, he called two police officers on Monday morning who placed him in a position of being "sandbagged" by Mrs. Sahm's testimony. Generally, when discoverable evidence is not revealed until the State seeks its introduction, the defense has two courses of action that it may seek: a continuance or the exclusion of the evidence. Reid v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d Defendant moved first for exclusion of the evidence and then for a continuance. Exclusion would be the appropriate remedy where the State has acted in bad faith and failed to comply with the discovery order or where exclusion is the only remedy which would avoid a substantial prejudice to the defendant's rights. It * is within the trial court's discretion to determine if any harm resulted from such alleged violation. However, absent clear error this Court will not reverse the ruling of the trial court. Id.

Here it is clear, and the defendant does not deny, that the State did not learn of Mrs. Sahm's statement until after Donna Madison had testified on Friday. It is also clear that the testimony Defendant introduced Monday morning via the police officers was nothing more than cumulative of the direct testimony given by Donna Madison and the Isotoner gloves which had been introduced into evidence. Clearly, the trial court could have determined in its discretion that Defendant was not prejudiced by the alleged discovery violation because it was cumulative of other evidence. Reversal should not be predicated on the erroneous admission of evidence when evidence of the same probative value is admitted without objection. Sutton v. State (), Ind. App., N.E.2d Even improperly admitted evidence does not require a reversal if it is cumulative of other evidence already before the jury. Hazzard v. State, supra. The trial court did not abuse its discretion to the prejudice of Defendant in permitting the testimony of Mrs. Sahm. Chandler v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d


Appellant claims error was committed in his sentencing in that the presentence investigation report from the probation officer did not conform to the mandates of Ind. Code § [A (Burns )] [repealed and replaced by Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. )]. Ind. Code § provides as follows:

"Scope of presentence investigation and report Solicitation of victim's statements. (a) The presentence investigation consists of the gathering of information with respect to the circumstances attending the commission of the offense, the convicted person's history of delinquency or criminality, social history, employment history, family situation, economic status, education and personal habits. Such investigation may also include any other matter which the probation officer conducting the investigation deems relevant to the question of sentence, and must include: (1) Any matters the court directs to be included; (2) Any written statements submitted to the prosecuting attorney by a victim under IC ( - ); and (3) Any written statements submitted to the probation officer by a victim. (b) If there are no written statements submitted to the probation officer, he shall certify to the court: (1) That he has attempted to contact the victim; and (2) That, if he has contacted the victim, he has offered to accept the written statements of the victim, or to reduce his oral statements to writing, concerning the sentence, including the acceptance of any recommendation. (c) As used in this section, the terms `recommendation' and `victim' have the meanings set out in IC " (emphasis added.)

In the instant case there was no statement from a victim in the presentence report, nor any certification from the probation officer that there was an attempt to obtain one. Appellant contends that as a result of this inaction, he should now be entitled to have his case remanded to the trial court for resentencing, citing Busam v. State (), Ind. App., N.E.2d We disagree.

Appellant is incorrect in his assertion that Mrs. Sahm, Theresa Gilligan's mother, was a "victim" under Ind. Code § Reference in this statute to the definition of "victim" is to a plea bargaining statute found at Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ), which provides as follows:

"Definitions. As used in this chapter: (a) `Prosecutor' means prosecuting attorney or deputy prosecuting attorney. * (b) `Recommendation' means a proposal by the prosecutor to a court that: (1) A charge be dismissed; or (2) A defendant, if he pleads guilty to a charge, receive less than the maximum penalty permitted by law. (c) `Victim' means a person who has suffered harm as a result of an offense. [IC , as added by Acts , P.L. , § 1, p. ; , P.L. , § 1, p. ]"

The intention of the Legislature in Ind. Code § is clearly to provide the victim an opportunity to make a statement to the sentencing judge. It refers only to the immediate and actual victims of an offense, which in this case were obviously unable to make any statements.

Appellant attempts to have subsequent provisions of the plea bargaining statutes, which provide that the next of kin of the actual victim be contacted when the actual victim cannot be contacted, apply to this case. In the chapter governing the plea bargaining process, Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ) [recodified at Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. )] provides that if a victim is deceased or under the age of eighteen (18) years, the prosecuting attorney is required to go to the next of kin or the parent/guardian or custodiam of the victim. It further provides for corporate or governmental entity representation. Under that same chapter, Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ) [recodified at Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. )] provides as follows:

"Certification of notice to victims required Effect of noncompliance. As a part of the recommendation submitted to the court, the prosecutor must certify that he has offered to show the proposed recommendation to the victims of the felony, if any, and that they have been offered an opportunity to present their opinion of the recommendation to the prosecutor. This section is for the benefit of the victim and gives no additional rights to the defendant. Failure to comply gives no grounds for post-conviction relief. [IC , as added by Acts , P.L. , § 3, p. ]" (emphasis added.)

These sections expand the definition of "victim," thereby expanding the duty to receive input from the "victim," but only in the context of plea bargain proposals. We do not construe these expansive provisions as applicable to Ind. Code § governing presentence reports in general.

It is clear that these statutes were primarily intended to address the social concerns for victims' rights so that a victim of a crime might have an opportunity to address the court concerning proper punishment. This was seen to counter societal perceptions that the Legislature and Courts are unconcerned with the victims' sense of justice in a particular case. In the instant case, Defendant is being sentenced after being tried and convicted, as opposed to engaging in the plea bargaining process in which charges may be dismissed or sentences reduced. Note, that the definition of "recommendation" contemplated in the plea bargaining statutes, and incorporated in Ind. Code § by language therein, means a proposal that a charge be dismissed or a defendant receive less than the presumptive sentence. The Legislature specifically referred to Ind. Code § to Ind. Code § , and not to any other subsequent provisions in Chapter 5. In addition, the Legislature separately and specifically expanded the definition of "victim" when the proceedings entail plea bargaining. We interpret this to mean the Legislature did not intend for Ind. Code § to incorporate any other provisions except Ind. Code § , referring to actual victims.

Further, there is no indication these statutes were intended as Defendant would have us construe them, namely: to create a right on the part of Defendant to have particular information included in his presentence report. On the contrary, Ind. Code § explicitly states it is designed for the benefit of the victims and gives no additional rights to defendants. Ind. Code § broadened the definition of "victim" and created more stringent * requirements by bringing the actual victim's next of kin into the process. It is obvious that the intent of these statutes is to respond to an attitude of victims that might feel the defendant will be sentenced too leniently and not as an additional provision to benefit the defendant.

It follows from this analysis that we do not agree with the Court of Appeals' decision in Busam v. State, supra, wherein remand was ordered to the trial court because the victim's statement contained nothing concerning the sentence. It is true Ind. Code § is mandatory and should be complied with by the courts. However, it does not necessarily follow that failure to comply strictly with the statute gives a defendant a right to require any action on appeal or requires this Court to find error in the sentencing. It is well settled that a defendant is not entitled to relief on appeal unless he can demonstrate he was prejudiced by the error he asserts. Pettit v. State (), Ind. , N.E.2d There was no actual victim remaining alive in this case, and the rights accorded under Ind. Code § do not inure to the benefit of Defendant. Therefore, there is no showing that Defendant was in any way harmed by his allegations of error with regard to the presentence report.


Finally, Appellant claims our death penalty statute is unconstitutional in that it lacks a definite procedure governing both the penalty phase jury hearing and the appellate review of the death penalty. He claims that the Legislature has not established a meaningful procedure for review by this Court and this Court has failed to establish guidelines or rules for such review, that the statute fails by reason of not requiring the trial court to make findings of fact, that the statute fails to require specific findings on capital issues and that the statute does not sufficiently define the scope of the evidence relevant and admissible at the penalty phase hearing. This Court has repeatedly dealt with these precise issues and decided them adverse to Defendant's position. Averhart v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d ; Burris v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d ; Schiro v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d , cert. denied, U.S. , S. Ct. , 78 L. Ed. 2d ; Williams v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d , cert. dismissed, U.S. , S. Ct. 33, 74 L. Ed. 2d No error is presented in this issue.

This Court must now decide whether the death penalty is appropriate considering the nature of this offense and the character of the offender. At the commencement of the sentencing hearing the court recited for the jury the possible aggravating and mitigating factors. Following trial, the jury recommended the death penalty.

The court then found that the State had proved beyond a reasonable doubt the aggravating factors provided for in Ind. Code § (Burns Repl. ), that each of the murders was committed during the perpetration of a burglary, and that Defendant had murdered more than once. Although the court did not list each possible mitigating factor and dispose of it, he found that there were absolutely no mitigating factors to be weighed against the aggravating ones. The trial court's findings are amply supported by the record. As to its finding that no mitigating factors existed, the presentence report as well as the evidence at trial showed Defendant had a significant criminal history. Although evidence was adduced at sentencing that Defendant suffered from an insecure and loveless childhood, there was no evidence that he suffered from extreme mental disturbance. The evidence was clear that the four victims in no way participated in or consented to Defendant's conduct. Although Defendant attempted to show that an accomplice committed the murders while he was committing a burglary in a neighboring house, the evidence to the contrary is overwhelming. There was substantial evidence that Defendant committed these acts without the aid of anyone else and that he was not under someone else's domination. * All circumstances further showed that Defendant appreciated the wrongfulness of his act, demonstrated by his detailing the deed to many others, his expressions that he was clever enough to and had "beat the system," and his having his picture taken with items from the Gilligan and Hendricks homes for the purpose of sending them to his friends in prison. He not only appreciated the wrongfulness of his acts but showed no remorse and, furthermore, considered his acts creditable accomplishments. There is overwhelming evidence here sufficient to convict this defendant of these crimes beyond a reasonable doubt and to prove the aggravating factors beyond a reasonable doubt. No reasonable person could find that the death penalty in this case was arbitrarily or capriciously applied or that it is unreasonable or inappropriate. We therefore affirm the trial court in all things, including the imposition of the death penalty.

This cause is remanded to the trial court for the purpose of setting a date for the death penalty to be carried out.

GIVAN, C.J., and SHEPARD, J., concur.

DeBRULER, J., concurs in result and dissents with separate opinion in which PRENTICE, J., concurs.

DeBRULER, Justice, concurring in result and dissenting.

Among the trial court's written findings of fact on the imposition of the death penalty, are the following two:

"I find that the Defendant Donald Ray Wallace, Jr.'s conduct and behavior following the commission of the offenses indicated his intent to conceal his act, that his conduct surrounding the circumstances of this case showed a total disregard for human life, and that the imposition of anything less than the death penalty would depreciate the seriousness of the offense." "8. The Court finds that the State has proved beyond a reasonable doubt that two aggravating circumstances exist that warrant the imposition of the death penalty: A. That the Defendant, Donald Ray Wallace, Jr., murdered Patrick Gilligan, Theresa Gilligan, Lisa Gilligan and Gregory Gilligan, while committing the crime of Burglary on the 14th day of January, , in Vanderburgh County, State of Indiana. (I.C. XX-XX-X-X(b)(1). B. That the Defendant, Donald Ray Wallace, Jr., murdered Patrick Gilligan, " (emphasis added)

The sentencing court has departed in these findings from the death penalty statutes in two respects. In the first, the court has utilized a factor applicable only in non-death sentencing as an aggravating circumstance. I.C. XX-XX-X-X(b)(4) governing non-death sentences provides:

(b) The court may consider the following factors as aggravating circumstances or as favoring imposing consecutive terms of imprisonment: * * * * * * (4) Imposition of a reduced sentence or suspension of the sentence and imposition of probation would depreciate the seriousness of the crime."

To the extent that the judge's death decision rests upon this criterion as an aggravating circumstance, it is erroneous. The death sentence statutes does not incorporate this criterion as an aggravating circumstance. This court has said, and I agree, that the death sentence statute ". . gives clear and specific guidance to the sentencing authority and adequately protects each individual's constitutional rights". Williams v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d , Davis v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d (separate opinion of DeBruler, J. concurring and dissenting, Smith v. State (), Ind., N.E.2d (separate opinion of DeBruler, J. concurring and dissenting). By the same token a departure from the guidance of the statute undermines that protection against an arbitrary decision that the defendant deserves death rather than imprisonment.

The second departure is in the court's critical finding of the aggravating circumstance * alleged on the basis of I.C. XX-XX-X-X(b)(1). That statutory aggravating circumstances is as follows:

"(1) The defendant committed the murder by intentionally killing the victim while committing or attempting to commit . burglary "

As trial prosecutor Levco accurately argued during his statement to the jury in the death penalty phase of the trial, the jury's attention under this alleged circumstance, in the aftermath of the verdicts of guilty of felony murder pursuant to I.C. XX-XX-X-X(2), must focus upon whether the killings were intentional. There is no finding by the sentencing court in its written findings set forth above, that appellant intentionally killed the victim, rather the court finds that the appellant "murdered" them, the term murder encompassing both a knowing and intentional killing. While the evidence supports a finding of intentional killings, that finding is for the sentencing judge to make and accurately record, and is not for this court in reviewing the sentence. I would therefore remand for further proceedings to conform to the death statute.

There is a nagging doubt, arising from this court's frequent confrontation in reviewing death sentences with the finding of absolutely no mitigating circumstances, that the mitigating circumstance search required by the death statute is either being misunderstood, misapplied, or not reflected in sentencing court findings. In my opinion it needs to be reiterated and emphasized for the guidance of judges and lawyers that a finding of the existence of a mitigating circumstance does not preclude a positive death decision. Second, to regard the aggravating circumstance or circumstances as so horrendous as to withstand all and any conceivable mitigating circumstances, without identifying appropriate mitigating circumstances on the record, clearly "creates the risk that the death penalty will be imposed in spite of factors which may call for a less severe penalty." Lockett v. Ohio, U.S. , 98 S. Ct. , 57 L. Ed. 2d (). I would therefore add to the remand in this case, the requirement that the trial court make a special finding dealing with appellant's long history from childhood of special mental health care, the court's own previous finding that he was not competent to stand trial, and the fact that appellant was being administered drugs during the trial. It is difficult to accept the proposition that such history should have no weight whatever in making the death decision.

PRENTICE, J., concurs.

Sours: https://law.justia.com/cases/indiana/supreme-court//shtml

Murders evansville 1980 indiana

In January of , one of the area's most heinous mass murders took place here in Evansville, IN. A mass murderer is different from a serial killer, in the fact that a mass murderer kills multiple people in one location and all at one time.

Most notorious is the incident of the slaughter of the Patrick Gilligan family, by Donald Wallace.  I remember it well, as I was nearly 20 when is happened.

Donald Ray Wallace set out to burglarize a few homes on the night of January 14,  After robbing the home of Ralph Hendricks on Aspen drive, Wallace got greedy, and decided to rob one more home: the Gilligan Family's dwelling next door.

However, when he did so, he was surprised to find the family inside. Patrick and Teresa Gilligan, along with their two children, aged 4 and 5, were confronted by Wallace with a gun. All four were tied up and shot in the head.

Wallace would say to friends later that he shot Mr. Gilligan because he was "giving him trouble".  Then, he shot Mrs. Gilligan because she was screaming and he "had to shut her up," and he murdered the children because he "could not let the children grow up with the trauma of not having parents."

Wallace then took a number of items from the home: guns, a CB, a scanner, and other property, all of which was later recovered from or traced to Wallace.

Wallace was found incompetent and confined in a mental hospital for almost two years prior to trial. His IQ was measured at In the weeks before his execution, Wallace admitted that he had "faked" mental illness, and that he had in fact committed the murders.

After a number of trials and appeals, Wallace was one of five people in the U.S to be executed in

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Ray_Wallace

Source: http://murderpedia.org/male.W/w1/wallace-donald-ray.htm

Sours: https://gbfrocks.com/the-underbelly-of-evansville-evansville-mass-murderers/
Indiana murder mystery seemed similar but not linked to Iowa cold case: police - ABC News

Investigation Discovery to explore mass murder of Evansville's Gilligan family

Donald Ray Wallace

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — An episode of the crime show "Dead of Winter" airing on the Investigation Discovery Channel Thursday night will explore one of the most notorious murders in Evansville history.

The episode titled "Midnight Mass" explores the murders of the Gilligan family in

Judge Robert J. Pigman of Vanderburgh Superior Court will be featured in the episode, which filmed here in October. Pigman was the lead prosecutor on the case in

More:Former detective remembers run-ins with notorious Evansville killer Donald Wallace | Webb

On Jan. 14, , Donald Ray Wallace, Jr., entered the Gilligan home on Aspen Drive, looking for something of value to steal. Wallace, a drug addict and career criminal by the age of 22, had already burglarized at least one other home on the same street that evening.

However, the Gilligans happened to come home, and when Patrick Gilligan fought back, Wallace shot all four members of the family — Patrick, his wife Theresa and their two small children Lisa and Gregory. 

Wallace was convicted in  but spent the two years prior to his trial in a mental hospital, being judged incompetent to stand trial. Wallace, who was said to have an IQ level of around , would later admit he had faked the mental illness aspect of his defense.

Diana Harrington, sister of Theresa Gilligan, told the Courier & Press the day before Wallace's execution she hoped people would remember her family, rather than the man who killed them.

More in Crime:EPD: Officers seized 10 guns from a 'mentally unstable' man under Indiana's Red Flag law

"She wants people to remember how her sister Theresa Gilligan was a loving mother. She wants people to remember how Patrick Gilligan was a great husband and humorous person who always had a smile on his face. She wants people to remember the Gilligans' children, 5-year-old Lisa and 4-year-old Gregory," the Courier & Press staff report dated March 9, , said. 

"It is now a time to bind and soothe the wounds that have been present for so long," Harrington told Courier & Press reporter Maureen Hayden. "It is now a time for healing with healing, there is a time for smiling and remembering. It is not only a time to remember Pat, Theresa, Lisa and Greg, but we should also remember with love and fond memories all the people that are no longer with us." 

In a series of letters to the Courier & Press in the weeks leading up to his execution, Wallace admitted remorse for his crimes. He said he was a changed man, no longer the "deranged dope fiend" who murdered the Gilligan family.

"I had no true center," Wallace wrote in "No moral center. No spiritual center. Not even a rational center. I was hollow I didn't have a clue where I was." 

Wallace's attorneys had written a page clemency request in his final days, but Wallace instructed them not to file it. He was executed by lethal injection at a.m. on March 10,

The episode airs at 9 p.m. Central Thursday night on Investigation Discovery - Spectrum cable channel 46, DirecTV channel

More in Crime:EPD: Man offered cops oral sex to get out of arrest

Sours: https://www.courierpress.com/story/opinion//02/21/id-channel-exploremurder-evansvilles-gilligan-family//

Similar news:

New Media Producer: Kerry Corum

UPDATE: A man convicted of killing an Evansville family, will become the subject of Indiana's first state execution in almost two years. But his victims' family wants to remember those he killed.

Diana Harrington says her sister, Theresa Gilligan, was a loving mother to five-year-old Lisa and four-year-old Gregory, and that Patrick Gilligan was a good husband and always humorous. She says the last 25 years without them have been "unbearable," because the media constantly gives Wallace all the attention - not his victims.

Harrington, and the rest of the Gilligan family, is inviting the public to a prayer service Wednesday night, to focus on the loss of a family - not their killer. The service is set for Wednesday evening, at St Theresa Catholic Church.

Wallace, meanwhile, is scheduled to die by chemical injection at midnight Wednesday night, for murdering the family while burglarizing their Evansville home in Reporter Stefanie Silvey is in Michigan City, covering that end of the story. You can catch her live reports beginning on Newswatch at , and right here at 14wfie.com.

UPDATE: The defense attorney for Donald Ray Wallace says she has a page clemency request - but Wallace won't let her file it. Because of that, attorney Sarah Nagy says there's nothing she can do to stop Wallace's execution by lethal injection, scheduled for just after midnight Thursday morning. Nagy says Wallace is capable, competent and clear in his wishes.

Wallace was convicted in the shooting deaths of the Patrick Gilligan family in their Vanderburgh County home. Newswatch will be in Michigan City to cover the execution.

Previously: A woman whose sister was murdered by Donald Ray Wallace, is planning a prayer vigil for his victims, on the eve of his execution. Diana Harrington, Theresa Gilligan's sister, says Theresa and Patrick Gilligan and their young children Lisa and Gregory will be the focus of the prayer service - not Wallace. It will take place a few hours before Wallace's execution on Wednesday.

The vigil site will be the Evansville church where the couple was married, and where their funerals were held in January

Wallace, years-old, is scheduled to die by lethal injection early Thursday at the Indiana State Prison in Michigan City. Wallace had been released from prison two months before he tied up and shot the family to death when they crashed his burglary attempt at their Evansville home.

Sours: https://wwwnews.com/story//donald-ray-wallace-indianas-dead-man-walking

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