Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Nicholas Sheley Gives Jailhouse Interview

Nicholas Sheley discusses his case with an Associated Press reporter on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2008 at the Knox County Law Enforcement Center in Galesburg. Sheley was charged with killing eight people during a two-state killing spree in June.

I am curious to hear what some of you fellow crime watchers have to say about this guy and his case.
My own opinion is that he may be making the case for his attorneys who are questioning his competency to wave his right to counsel.
Sheley is very familiar with the legal system, do you think he just trying to manipulate the system? The state says they are ready to go to trial so I don't see how a speedy trial is to the
state's disadvantage.


Below is the story as it appeared in the Galesburg Register-Mail.

Sheley says he aided own capture

By DON BABWIN
The Associated Press

Nicholas Sheley feels like he's losing control. All the words from fast-talking lawyers, the meetings he says are going on behind his back, are keeping him from the one thing he's wanted since police said they suspected him of killing eight people during a two-state June rampage: To go to trial quickly.


So Sheley called a reporter and summoned him to the Knox County Jail. Later Tuesday he sat down behind a glass partition, clad in an orange jumpsuit, with organized, handwritten notes that contained his legal strategy.



Sheley told The Associated Press that he decided to speak because he wants a speedy trial and he feels that won't happen.
"Because to me it has its advantages and to the state it has its disadvantages, which I'll keep to myself," he said.
Sheley was cryptic and would not say why he wants a quick trial. He would not even say the words "innocent" or "guilty" or whether he knew any of the victims — only that he hasn't even talked to his own attorneys about his alleged crimes.



The closest Sheley came to talking about the case was that he played an active role in his capture July 1 outside a Granite City bar because he wanted to get the ball rolling on the legal process and his family feared he'd be killed if a manhunt continued.
Sheley, who was arrested as he smoked a cigarette outside the bar, said he knew he was the subject of a manhunt because he'd seen newspaper accounts of the case and had talked to his family.
"I played a part in my capture," Sheley said. "Not only that but it was also concerns for my family. They were stressed out and worried and concerned over the fact that the police might want to kill me."

Sheley's charged with bludgeoning to death six people in Illinois and two people in Missouri. Knox County prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in one slaying.
He criticized his public defenders, saying he hasn't told them anything about the case.

"The lawyers keep making reference to an appeal process. So basically, they're probably already under the impression that I'm guilty, without even having it gone to a trial yet," he said. "Which leads me to believe they probably already believe there's guilt on my behalf but I've never discussed any facts or anything with regards to this case whatsoever."

Sheley said he does not feel he will get a fair trial.
"Not necessarily set up, but railroaded," he said.
"My belief in the system, like I said, it's crooked," Sheley said. "The public defender is appointed by a judge who works for the state of Illinois. The public defender is getting paid by the state."

Jim Harrell, one of Sheley's attorneys, said Tuesday that the defense agreed in court Friday to file a motion requesting Sheley undergo a psychiatric examination. That motion hasn't yet been filed, but would be soon, he said.
"I can't comment on the reasoning behind the motion," Harrell said. "I am bound by attorney-client privilege. I'm bound from discussing conversations that are held individually or with the other co-counsel with Mr. Sheley." Sheley said he thinks the motion is an effort to delay his case. "You might say finding me fit is best ... but they just use this to buy more time," he said.

Sheley is charged in the deaths of Kenneth Ulve, 25, Brock Branson, 29, Branson's fiancee, Kilynna Blake, 20, and her 2-year-old son, Dayan Blake. They were found in a Rock Falls apartment June 30. The town is in Whiteside County community in northwestern Illinois.
Sheley also is charged in the June deaths of a 93-year-old Russell Reed of Sterling, 65-year-old Ronald Randall of Galesburg, and Tom and Jill Estes, an Arkansas couple who were killed in Missouri.


Prosecutors in Knox County are seeking the death penalty in Randall's slaying.
Sheley wouldn't discuss any of the victims in the case or why he feels he's being railroaded.
"This is my case," Sheley said. "The way I want to go about it is my only concern. I don't want an adequate defense. I want above and beyond the best defense."



But he said he was staying upbeat while in jail.
"I'm good, other than my frustrations with the way my case is being handled. I'm staying positive. I put my faith in the Lord," Sheley said.
___
Associated Press Writer Caryn Rousseau in Chicago contributed to this report.

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