MUSCATINE, Iowa (AP) — A man testified that he saw a woman burn bloody clothes at her eastern Iowa home a day or two after prosecutors allege that she beat her ex-boyfriend to death with a baseball bat in 1992.
Scott Payne told a jury Thursday that Annette Cahill, whom he had met through a friendship with one of her relatives, said the clothes were covered with red paint. But he said he knew it was blood because of his days working at a meatpacking house slaughtering pigs, the Muscatine Journal reported.
Cahill, now 56, was charged in May 2018 with first-degree murder, accused of beating to death Corey Wieneke with a bat that was later found near his home in rural West Liberty. Police have said Cahill had been in a sexual relationship with Wieneke, who was engaged, and that they had argued about his involvement with another woman hours before he was killed on Oct. 13, 1992.
A witness came forward in 2017, saying Cahill had implicated herself in the death in 1992, prompting authorities to re-examine the case. Cahill is now a mother of three adult children and a grandmother.
Her first trial ended in a mistrial after jurors couldn’t reach a unanimous verdict.
Payne didn’t testify about the clothes at the first trial. A prosecutor asked Thursday why Payne didn’t report what he saw to law enforcement, and he replied that was using drugs and driving illegally at the time and was not at a “good place” in his life.
“I tried to avoid the police as often as I could,” he said.
He also testified that he knew Cahill and Wieneke had a relationship because Cahill spent nights at Wieneke’s home.
Information from: Muscatine Journal, http://www.muscatinejournal.com