October 03, 2005

Hearings To Begin Today In Funeral Home Murders


Jason DeRusha

(WCCO) Hudson, Wis. Prosecutors are expected to tell a judge on Monday why they believe Father Ryan Erickson murdered two people inside a funeral home in Hudson, Wis. more than three years ago.

John Doe hearings are scheduled for Monday in the murder investigation of Dan O'Connell, 39, and James Ellison, 22. They were killed inside the O’Connell Family Funeral Home in February 2002.

Sources said Erickson is the prime suspect in the shootings, and believe O'Connell was the target and Ellison was in the wrong place at the wrong time. The prosecutor said he will present evidence that does support Erickson’s claim of innocence before he hanged himself in December 2004.

Because Erickson is dead, the John Doe hearings will be used, instead of normal court proceedings. Witnesses will testify in front of a judge, but there are no subpoenas. All of the witnesses are voluntarily coming forward.

Posted by kshaw at October 3, 2005 09:19 AM