BEDFORD, VA., JUNE 15 -- The prosecution concluded its double murder case against Jens Soering today by presenting a second statement in which Soering described the knife attacks on his girlfriend's parents as "an absolute horror experience."
As in previous statements to police, the West German national said he went to the Bedford County home of Derek and Nancy Haysom to get them to stop opposing his relationship with their daughter, Elizabeth Haysom, not to kill them."I had no intent to kill thes epeople," Soering told a West German prosecutor in 1986. "It was an absolute horror experience, an unexpected horror experience."
Soering's description of the attacks on the retired Canadian steel company executive and his wife were substantially similar to one recounted in court earlier in the week by Ricky Gardner, a Bedford County Sheriff's Department investigator.
Soering, 23, now claims that Elizabeth Haysom, 26, killed her parents and then persuaded him to say he committed the crime because he, as a diplomat's son, had a better chance of getting a light sentence.
Haysom, who testified against Soering earlier this week, pleaded guilty to being an accessory to murder and is serving a 90-year prison sentence.
Soering's second statement was made Dec. 30, 1986, during a two-hour interrogation by a prosecutor from West Germany, where Soering was hoping to be tried. At the time, Soering was in a London prison fighting extradition to the United States.
Investigator Gardner testified this week that Soering made the first statement to him during an interview in a London police station on June 8, 1986.
Soering and Haysom fled to Europe when the investigation began to close in on them. Commonwealth's Attorney James Updike said the statement to the West German prosecutor was more incriminating than the one made to Gardner because of the timing.
In December 1986, Soering knew that Haysom had agreed to be extradited to the United States and would plead guilty to plotting her parents' murders, Updike said during a debate over whether the statement should be admitted as evidence. "He had no reason to protect her any further."
Updike also said that in December 1986, Soering had come to view the relationship with skepticism and thus made his primary defense less believable.