FreeBart A COMPELLING STORY ABOUT A WRONGFUL CONVICTION AND JUSTICE LEFT UNDONE

18May/120

Murder suspect wants interrogation tossed out

 

 

Murder suspect wants interrogation tossed out

By: Ryan Denham  |  Yesterday
Barton McNeil and Misook WangBarton McNeil, left, and Misook Wang. (Photos courtesy of the Illinois Department of Corrections and McLean County sheriff's department)

BLOOMINGTON – A Bloomington woman wants a judge to toss out incriminating statements she made to police last fall before she was charged with murdering her mother-in-law.

Misook Wang, 46, was arrested in September for allegedly luring her mother-in-law, Wenlan Tyda, to Bloomington, then choking her to death and trying to hide the body in a forest preserve. Wang claims it was self-defense, but police say it was an elaborate plan.

In a new motion to suppress, Wang attorney Brian McEldowney asks a judge to suppress what his client told police during a 13-hour interrogation at BPD headquarters. It was during that interrogation that she gradually revealed her culpability in the death and concealment of the body. She also participated in a walk-through video recording at the alleged crime scene.

“In increasingly direct terms, she made five separate requests for an attorney,” McEldowney claims in the motion. Despite her poor English speaking skills, some of the requests were plainly said and could not reasonably have been misunderstood, McEldowney claimed.

“Well I want to get a lawyer really, I need a lawyer,” she said at one point during the interrogation, according to a transcript.

McEldowney also claims detectives repeatedly tried to get Wang to waive her right to counsel.

“The procedures followed by police in this case were obviously calculated to circumvent the defendant’s right to remain silent,” the motion reads.

A hearing is set for May 30 on the motion to suppress.

Meanwhile, Wang’s name has also surfaced in the 1998 Bloomington murder of Christina McNeil. The 3-year-old victim’s father, Barton McNeil, is serving a life sentence for killing his daughter, but he’s long claimed that it was his ex-girlfriend Wang, also known as Misook Nowlin, who really killed her.

The Illinois Innocence Project is now reviewing McNeil’s case. Authorities say they’ve double-checked Wang’s connection to both cases and determined there are no new leads to follow related to any connection.

Conceding it was a “unique situation,” McEldowney said earlier this month that he doesn’t “believe there’s any real connection” between the cases.

Ryan Denham can be reached at ryan@wjbc.com.

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