October 06, 2005

Police release records in double murder

Duluth News Tribune


HUDSON, Wis. - A priest who is believed to have killed two funeral home workers three years ago denied involvement during a police interview and instead suggested the mafia was involved, according to police records released Wednesday.

Police first interviewed the Rev. Ryan Erickson in November 2004 about the murders of Dan O'Connell and James Ellison on Feb. 5, 2002.

Erickson, 31, denied knowing anything about the fatal shootings, though he said he heard rumors that Dan O'Connell's father was caught up with the mafia and the mafia turned on him, Erickson said, according to a 58-page transcript released Wednesday.

Erickson, who killed himself in December soon after a second interview with police, said he couldn't remember who told him the rumor.

Dan O'Connell's father, Tom O'Connell, called Erickson's mafia theory absurd.

Posted by kshaw at October 6, 2005 10:28 AM