Trial Underway for Casper Man Arrested for Homicide
A trial began for Casper man George Dickerson who was arrested earlier this year after admitting to police that he had committed a double homicide. What he did not know then was that the second victim, his mother-in-law, had survived. He is being charged with 2nd degree murder and attempted 2nd degree murder in Natrona County District Court. Dickerson faces between 20 years to life in prison on each charge.
District attorney Dan Itzen opened statements by detailing the gruesome discoveries made by local police at a house on Begonia Street on the morning of January 8.
The prosecutor closed by saying that the defendant was "absolutely right" when he called 9-1-1 and admitted that he had committed a double homicide.
George Dickerson kept his eyes forward, expressionless. He was dressed in a pressed grey suit and thick black glasses and had a fresh haircut.
Public Defender Marty Scott addressed the jury by going over the 5 W’s of the case: Who, What, When, Where, and Why. He centered his argument on the ‘why’ and reasoned that the ‘how’ also remains murky.
The defense pointed to another culprit in the tragedy that ensued. Prescription pills. Scott told the jury that prior to the alleged attack, Dickerson was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder. As a result of that, he had been taking two antidepressant prescriptions: an off-brand Effexor and Wellbutrin.
The side effects of the first, stated Scott, can cause abnormal violent behavior. The defense said that prescription had been doubled mistakenly on the day (and the day after) Dickerson is alleged to have killed his father-in-law and seriously injured his mother-in-law. Scott concluded his statement by affirming his client's innocence by reason of mental illness.
Itzen called the first witness to the stand: the dispatcher who took the call Dickerson placed the morning after the crime allegedly occurred.
A recording of the call shows that Dickerson told the dispatcher that he had committed a double homicide. He first asked that police go to the Begonia residence and then requested that one pick him up at the South Side of the Sunrise parking lot.
He was very cooperative with dispatch and answered all the questions she asked. At one point, she said, "How did you kill them?" There was a long pause before he stated, "Andy came at me...and I just lost it. Rose jumped on me and I knocked her up against the wall and it went from there." When asked what weapon he used he said, a "kitchen knife."
Itzen next called the first responding Casper Police patrol officer to the stand. The witness said he was just about to finish his shift when he saw the call on the board before it was called in. When asked by Itzen, he told the court that Dickerson's clothing did not appear stained, he did not have any visible injuries, and his body movement was not unusual.
Body camera footage was played for the court, which showed that it was still dark as the sun began to rise at 6:45 a.m. on January 8. Dickerson was cooperative with law enforcement and went peacefully into the patrol car.
We will make updates to this story as the trial continues.
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Gallery Credit: Kolby Fedore, TSM