Woman convicted of killing NFL star Shaun Gayle's pregnant GF says she made false confession to protect son
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS: The woman, who was convicted of murdering NFL star Shaun Gayle's pregnant girlfriend, has now broken her silence and claimed her innocence.
Marni Yang was convicted in the 2007 murder of the pregnant woman, Rhoni Reuter, in 2011. At the time of the murder, Reuter had been pregnant with her baby. Prosecutors believe that Yang who was Gayle's part-time lover got jealous and killed Reuter. They also say that she was "obsessed" with him.
Yang had confessed her crimes to a friend during a recorded meeting. The contents of the meeting were played during the trial by prosecutors. She is now claiming that she had made up a false confession as she was scared that authorities would charge her teenage son, the Daily Mail reports.
According to Yang's children, Andrew, Emily, and Brandon, the authorities had coerced them into making inaccurate and false statements, a new 20/20 show claims. The show which will air on Friday, May 8, delves into what Yang's team is calling 'new evidence' and throws light on whether the correct person is in prison.
During the confession, Yang told her friend, "I took the first shot. I remember screaming cause at that point I realized we are now at the point of no return. All she was doing was screaming until she went down, and then when she went down she took her foot and she took one good kick at me, got me in the shin."
"It was like weak by that time. And that was it. I just, I, took one last shot, in the head – finished her off. And I took off," she added in the confession. Gayle and Yang had sex the night before Reuter was killed. The friend who Yang confessed to, Christi Paschen, was able to tell the police where a bracelet belonging to Reuter was buried.
The show also features interviews with forensic reconstruction experts who "firmly believe in Yang's innocence." Yang is in jail and is serving two life sentences at the Logan Correctional Center. One of the biggest pieces of evidence was a conversation where Yang can be heard telling a friend that she had shot 42-year-old Reuter at her home.
According to Yang's attorney, Jed Stone, Yang had falsely confessed as she was scared that the police would charge her teenage son. The attorney has also stated that Yang's original attorneys did not challenge the evidence shown by prosecutors.
He added how the prosecutors had also withheld evidence that would help Yang's case. Yang has claimed that her family had been bullied and coerced into a confession once the police learned about her relationship with Gayle.
Yang's attorneys added that they are in possession of a phone call that took place the night before the confession where she had told her father that she was going to "concoct a story" of guilt. During the trial, Yang's defense was that it was Gayle himself who shot Reuter.
Yang's father believes his daughter is innocent. The night before the confession, he claims he told her, "(Police) have been tormenting us, and it's been going on for almost two years; we can't stand it anymore. She says, 'I'm going to get in the car, drive and meet Christi, and make up a story that I committed the murder,'' The Chicago Tribune reports.