Episode 2: Prime Suspect

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Someone Fatally Stabs Stacy Stanton. Inside her apartment on February third. This, was violent. Brutal. On February Third Nineteen Ninety someone brutally murdered twenty eight-year-old Stacey Stanton inside of her second story apartment in north. Carolina. Then cleaned up and disappeared the residents of Manziel have lived in fear. For thirty years, Stanton's killer has had one face and one name North Carolina investigators in Oh police. Believe that someone is Clifton Spencer. But his prejudice they absolutely have tunnel vision that it was the black man who killed the white woman keeping an innocent man convicted they will know Nassim of them will go. Good old. Man, in new there. In covering up more than one crime. For that guy I just really search league. This is counter clock the investigation into the murder of Stacey Stanton. I'm your host Delia Denver. Within hours of processing stacy's apartment, the SBA forensic team led by Dennis Honeycutt bagged and tagged a lot of evidence. He dusted nearly every surface lifting eighty-one fingerprints in total. Whether these prints belonged to just one person couple of people or even eighty one. They didn't know that but they knew there was potential that a lot of people had been in Stacey small. Rental Unit. But this didn't really surprise police because as the FBI agents got to the scene and began talking with people, they realized pretty quickly that stacy was a very social person. She had a lot of people in and out of place on a regular basis. In addition to her job as a waitress, she cut here in her apartment to make extra money on the side. So there were people coming and going from the unit all of the time. According to ESPN, is report all of the fingerprints were retrieved from surfaces like doorframes, tables, cups, stuff you would expect and none of the prints were impressions maiden, blood. So with so many fingerprints to work with they needed to figure out who belong to, but it was complicated because some of the prints were only partial. To start they at least wanted to talk with people who would have had a reason to be at Stacey's people that were close tour and were around the apartment on a regular basis people who probably had touched a lot of services in her house. They figured several prints were gonNA come back as being stacy's but they also had strong suspicions that some going to belong to a man named Norman. Brandon. Stacy's recent ex boyfriend. Now everyone knew Norman as Mike. So from here on out, we're GONNA call Norman Mike Brandon. Investigators were really interested in my because they've found mail address to him inside of Stacy's apartment that mail was a clear sign that he lived temporarily with her at some point. Conveniently for the FBI Mike? Had An extensive criminal history North Carolina and the State Department of Corrections already had his fingerprints on file P- the SBA I plan to compare his prince to some of the eighty one prince found the scene. What's interesting though is that Mike Actually beat them to the? Punch. At three thirty in the afternoon on February third, just an hour or so after stacy was found dead Mike came to the police. He said, he wanted to help because he thought he might have information on who stacey was with the night before. He showed up at the crime scene and given a handwritten statement to dare county sheriff's colonel. Jasper Williams? Mike wrote that the night before Friday February second he was at a downtown bar called the Green Dolphin pub. He said he saw stacy there but he wasn't with her he was with his new girlfriend patty who worked at the bar. Mike said everyone was drinking and stacey became upset that he was with new girl then she stormed off and left. Right around that time, she left Mike says a friend of his named Clifton Spencer walked into the bar. After Clifton came inside, he began talking with Mike. Mike said Clinton was causing problems in the pub with some guys over money at the pool table going missing and this interaction made Clifton eventually leave but he returned a little while later to tell Mike that he'd been at Stacey's. Clifton said that while he was there stacey asked him to go back to the bar and tell Mike to come see her. When Mike said, he wasn't GonNa, go see stacy because he didn't care to Clifton mentioned he was going back over to stacy's to see if she was all right because he was there before she'd been crying. After getting this statement from Mike Jasper, Williams began looking into it he wasn't exactly clearing my of any connection to the crime just yet but because Mike had been so forthcoming right away Jasper believed that what he'd said was relevant. Not long after getting my statement, the sheriff's Office decided to run a records check on Clifton Spencer Deputy Terry. Williams is the one ass to do that. Now if you remember, Terry is the same woman who found Stacy's body earlier in the afternoon with Tina. When she's asked to run a check on Clifton, she switched gears from being a part-time diner hostess in his back and law enforcement mode. Terry told me that in between the time Jasper took Mike statement at three thirty in the afternoon and before the SBA I began processing stacy's apartment she was asked to look into Clifton Spencer. She says, she sat in on a conversation in Jasper. Williams office with an FBI agent joining them and those men agreed that Clifton was already a suspect. It's at that. Point Jasper tells her to run an open warrant check on Clifton. Terry says she did, and after punching some parameters into a criminal records database, a result came back. Clifton Spencer a black blackmail from Columbia, North Carolina a town thirty minutes away from Mayo had an outstanding warrant for drug charges. The State of New Jersey had put the worn out on him and technically this meant he was a wanted man. I dug through a pile of old documents and was actually able to find that exact warrant print out from February third nineteen ninety the paper shows that at six o four pm on February third the printout landed on Jasper Williams desk. Now this means that just a few hours into their investigation before any physical proof was obtained showing Clifton even knew stacy investigators had him on their radar as someone of interest but not because of any physical evidence that placed him at the scene but because Mike Brandon had brought his name up the FBI agents in the manual police chief decided to re interview Mike again because so far he's the only one who brought up Clinton's name and it was possible he might have no more about him. At. Nine forty at night on February third, the police and Mike meet at the dare county courthouse in downtown. Again recapped his story of being at the Green Dolphin pub, the previous night, and he mentioned that he saw stacy and Clifton, but this time Mike. Went into more detail. He addressed right off the bat that he used to live with stacy in her apartment. But said that he moved out just two months earlier in December of nineteen, eighty, nine to me. That's a good way to explain why his fingerprints might be inside if investigators found any. Mike said after he and Stacey had broken up he started seeing his new girlfriend, a woman named Patty Roe. My. Tells the agents that Patty found out. She was pregnant with his child at the beginning of February but he wasn't sure if stacy knew that or not. He said when he got to the bar at six o'clock, he cashed his paycheck with the bartender and then met up with. Patti. Stacey was inside near the jukebox drinking wine coolers, and to avoid direct contact with his ex he started playing pool in another room. But Stacey kept making eye contact with them and eventually made your way over to. He. said that she asked him how he was doing and if he was ready to come home. That comment upset Patty and the Closer Stacey got to Mike the Worse the situation became. Mike says at one point. Stacey. was rubbing on his arms and told him that she still loved him and he said that he said the same thing back to her. Patty is pregnant girlfriend who is right there grew angrier and angrier with the drama and finally Mike just told stacy leave. So she did upset and crying. After that Mike says that Clifton walked into the bar and asked Mike if he wanted to smoke crack together and Mike dowse Clifton No. Then just like Mike and said, in his original written statement he says Clifton got into a verbal spat with some guys at the pool table over money going missing and then Clifton left. He says Clifton returned about a half hour later told Mike. He gone walking ran into Stacey in her driveway. Clifton tells Mike that Stacey was still crying and had asked Clifton to go back to the bar and tell Mike to come over to her apartment. Mike Tony Clifton that he wasn't gonNA leave the bar and said he would catch up with Stacey later. Mike says Clifton than asked him for money to go buy cocaine but Mike refused. Mike. said that night Clifton was broke and wanted drugs badly he'd gone around to a lot of people asking to bum off money. Mike said he in Clifton weren't exactly friends and that they just knew each other from work. At the time. Mike. Worked in construction and Clifton had once a delivery driver for a building supply company in Mankato they'd become friends and had a history of doing drugs together. Mike's us that Clifton new stacy because he'd been to her apartment several times to do cocaine. Mike says when Clifton left the bar for the second time, it was around eleven o'clock at night, and that was the last time he saw him. In his interview, Mike was very clear to establish his own alibi. He said that after a few hours of drinking, he and Patty left the bar with some friends and everyone went to that friends home in to stay the night. He says he was there the entire night and those people could vouch for him. But before questioning Mike, any further or confirming his alibi, the SBA I immediately ran with what Mike told them about, Clifton? Their top priority from that point forward was finding and questioning Clifton. Because they believed, he was the last person to see. Stacey alive. S. B. I. Agents Working Stacy's case we're able to track down Clifton in the small town of Columbia north. Carolina. Columbia is a thirty minute drive inland. From Mayo you have to pass through it if you're going to the outer banks from cities like Raleigh Charlotte, it's just over the dare county line in Tarot County. Less than a thousand people live there and in a stark contrast Emmanuel most of the residents Tarot County are African American Clifton has called Columbia home since he was born. I was just like any a young man who grew up in the sixties. You know we my friends. We all played a lot of sports. You know every day will play basketball or something Sambas we pay He graduated from Columbia High. School and was well known in the small community by the time turned eighteen. His family like everyone else there was poor and black but that didn't bother him. My Dad or very hard to provide for the family. My mother Lozo was a homemaker. And I think that you know I just said. To me. Normal small town upbringing. Did wear on him and other black families in. Columbia. Was the town's claim to fame the historic, somerset? Plantation Aka, an old rich white families home were three hundred black slaves lived and worked before the American civil. War. The biggest thing down in that area is. That plantation that everybody wanted to go and see. So historic marker, but the history is not a good history or anywh. This site is a nationally recognized tourist attraction and its roots of racism run deep in the small town. There is lands all over the place. Gerald County into the thirties Washington I'm sure they're count editors as well. then. It was almost like it's like a towel being such like when they when somebody. The railroad tracks that Clifton grew up playing around aren't far from Somerset. The railway was essential back in the day for transporting goods from the plantation. And it's along those same tracks on Sunday February fourth nineteen ninety that the terrel county sheriff pulls over his cruiser. Kerr he sees thirty one year old Clifton. Spencer. Walking alone. Here's quickens memory of that moment. Came up there and he said. She. Needed a tall to me. I came up with here. Is there a need for you to go? Come with me down to. The sense of Anita tel-aviv some I said okay. So there with him. When I got tear Think spoke will. SBA agent. Thank this sheriff's deputy sheriff from Derek. County. Clifton spent the next two hours willingly talking with Mantos police chief, Steve Day, and an espionage agent named Kent inskeep. Now They asked me questions. About Stacy last time I saw and I saw last night. Clifton explained to the men that he'd been in manual the Green Dolphin pub on Friday February. Second. He had no idea. Stacey had been murdered until they broke the news to him in a very bizarre way. Down there in the jail. They walked out and left. Me Sitting at a desk I think was the sheriff's this. It was too big pitchers land face down. On, the desk before I got there not even really. Noticed that they will get what he told with direct me to sit right here. So what those figures were. Pitches Stacey. Made me mad at me you did. Right, did just other. Despite this cruel way of telling him Stacey was dead Clifton still cooperated with investigators. He told them everything he remembered about that night. He said he started hitchhiking around six thirty at night and two white guys. He knew had given him a ride from Columbia demand you and then those men dropped him off at the Green Dolphin. POB around o'clock. When I I the Internet bar when I got there, I just walked up there and a particular time. People call really didn't go spend a lot of time. At night. Time to time I have been in day to day. I did see Stacy I came in. And apparently. Once, I came in she was. have. Some kind of disagreement for for. Boyfriend. So she took off ran out. Clifton got some bad vibes from two white guys at the bar who worked for the coastguard. He says, he got the impression that he wasn't welcome there because he was black he says, those guys accused him of stealing coins off of the pool table which he denied. At that point Clifton says he's over all of the tension and decided to just leave. He had plans to go to his friend win Moore's house anyway, and it was only about a fifteen minute walk from the bar. Headed to my friend's house. And I actually was walking fast. Apartment at least he was living at that particular time. And she. Has, been drinking but she saw me Schaal that man I I went to see. Was You wanting? So from there you know she. Pretty much asked me. If the I, didn't mind to go back and asked her boyfriend to. Come by the House. I went by Nass. And three too much. This went all. Decided reclined to Cook After Mike said, he didn't care to catch up with Stacey Clifton went back to Stacy's tell her Mike wasn't coming by. This was around eleven o'clock at night according to Clifton. He said after that second trip to Stacy's apartment. He and Stacey shared a few drinks vodka together inside of her kitchen and living room and she continued to lament over Mike. After. A while Stacey decided, she wanted to smoke crack. Now Clifton was down for this because at the time he admits he was a full blown drug addict who didn't have a steady job and nowhere to be since. He was technically homeless. About Lot ahead transparent up to that point before that particular date. I was in a point in my life where I wasn't it'll good space at all. I had started using drugs. And Take that from that point on. I've become a drug addict. You know I was just out there running around. Those function and drug. Hours working every day but yet I will go out to use drugs and. I say up to that day I used suggest chase. Fine people have wanted to go get hired I just hang with. A lot of the people that I come in contact with. Those manual was people that use drugs. At this point, it's important to note that along with Stacey and Clifton at her apartment there was another man who came by briefly. His name is Richard Fugate, and he's a guy who'd been at the Green Dolphin. Pub. On both trips, Clifton May to stacy's apartment to and from the Bar, He tells investigators that he richard and Stacy were inside the apartment together. But then eventually Richard Left. We'll get more into Richard story in a future episode but for now just keep that in the back of your mind. Clifton says after Richard Leaves, it's just him and Stacey. It's at that point that they decide they're going to smoke crack. Stacey has a little bit inside of a pipe in her bedroom, but by the time Clifton goes to get it and comes back to see. Stacey. Remind and didn't want any. So Clifton takes a hit by himself and uses it all up. A few minutes later stacey walks into the room and ask for some apparently she changed her mind again. But after Clifton took the hit, there wasn't any left for Clifton says, Stacey handsome thirty five to forty dollars in cash and asked him to go out and buy some more which he does. And this is the point where Clifton says, his memory gets really really fuzzy both during his interrogation with investigators in nineteen. And still to this day. He says, he knows he left Stacy's apartment and went to some areas around town where he thought he could score, but he never got any drugs. The details of how long that took him or any specific people he came across he can't remember. He says his memory is so bad because his brain was in a fog from drinking most of the night and being high. According to the SBA agents paperwork. On this case, they wrote down that Clifton said that at one point before he left to get drugs, he and stacy had laid down in her living room together on her mattress. The agents paperwork says that Clifton said he remembered at one point Stacey. Out of the mini skirt that she'd been wearing at the pub and put on gray sweatpants. The FBI agents also wrote that Clifton said that he thought he may have tried to be intimate with stacy laying down together but he knew nothing really happened because he had not been able to become aroused. But that's according to the SBA agents reports Clinton says he doesn't remember saying any of this. One thing he does know for sure is that after wandering in search of drugs for a bit, he returned to Stacy's apartment to give her her money back. But by the time he returned her door was locked. He told investigators he believed this was around one thirty or two in the morning. He couldn't be sure and he thought it was weird that the apartments inside door was locked because stacey was expecting him to come back with drugs. When he couldn't get in and no one answered the door. He just decided to keep the money and then he headed to his friend Wayne's house. Clifton made the short walk to Wayne's but he says when he got there, Wayne wasn't home. After making a few laps around his neighborhood and stumbling through a nearby convenience store parking lot. He returned to Wayne's between four and five in the morning knocked again and this time Wayne answered. Clifton Wayne, let him inside and within a few minutes he fell asleep on a recliner in his living room. The next morning he said he hitchhiked on US sixty four and manlio a white male pulled over and offered him a ride back to Columbia. As Chief Day in the FBI agent are listening to Clifton version of events they realize he's just given them a ton of information. There were several people they needed to verify his story with but I they him if he'd agree to take a polygraph the next day and Clifton said yes. Just to make sure that Clewiston Pinton, go anywhere the police acted on that outstanding warrant from New Jersey and arrested him Clifton was locked down for the time being Tarot, county. The next morning a few more FBI agents, their supervisor chief day, and Jasper Williams. From the sheriff's office in Dare County arrived to the sheriff's Office and Tarot County. They prepare Clifton for his polygraph and ask him to sign a release form. But at that point, he's not really feeling it anymore. Clinton had sobered up after spending the night in jail and he's thinking clearer. Now he tells the investigators he doesn't want to take the test without speaking to an attorney or to his father. I. By one o'clock that afternoon both of Clinton's parents had come to the jail and spoken with them, and after that Clifton decided, he would take the test. He said speaking with his parents convinced him that because he had nothing to hide, he should use this as a chance to prove he wasn't involved. They had me Sinden. Making. A whole lot of noise anytime. I see somebody just make a lot of noise. So every time it makes laws I look at it you know something like data so it was. Not. Accurate reading or give a reading. Maybe maybe I'm not I actually being truthful whatever. For three and a half hours in SBA agent grilled Clifton about his version of events and everything he said happened between him Stacey. I got a hold of some public documents that detailed is interrogation by the FBI and when you look at them, you can see that really a lot of the agents questions weren't really questions at all. They were more suggestive statements to Clifton to see if he would agree. There police as together and they're making. A story out of nothing. The. Sbi they didn't completely live. What they did was they made us a narrow with some things that I did say to make it saying like this is false. This is why at. The very end of the polygraph. They finally ask Clifton Three Direct questions. Did you cut stacy? Did you cut stacey in the apartment and were you there when stacy was cut? To of the FBI agents doing the interrogation grade, the results, and they gave Clifton core of negative twelve, which according to them meant he'd failed. Now at this point, Clifton is starting to figure out what's really going on. He is a murder suspect and there was no way he's going to continue to talk with them but they keep after him and that night the pressure only caught worse. By. Ten o'clock the S B I had gotten a judge to sign off on a search warrant which allowed the SBA to seize blood hair including from Clifton. He told them that the shirt he was wearing when they arrested him was the same one he worn on Friday night at the bar so they took that to. The warrant also allowed the SBA I dare Clinton's fingerprints to the ones collected from the crime scene but Clifton already told them he'd been inside Stacy's apartment. So is prints were probably going to be on a lot of surfaces. Avenue that you know whatever they took for me. You know like the fingerprints I know of fingerprints because that was him. Around midnight, Clifton was taken to chew on hospital just outside of Columbia, a doctor, their plucked out his hair and drew his blood and right away it went to Dennis Honeycutt. February sixth and seventh go by with Clifton still sitting in jail. But on Thursday, the eighth to FBI agents returned interrogate him once again. This time they confront him head on, and they suggest that he tried to put the moves on stacy while they were alone in her apartment and she rejected him things got ugly and she'd come at him with a knife and that's why he killed her Clifton denied all of that. He said that he couldn't remember a lot of what had happened that night because he was high and drunk but he knew he didn't kill anyone. He said he'd vaguely remembered laying down on the mattress next Stacey for a bit and maybe engaging in heavy petting but he's The have sex. After hours of telling the SBA, the same story over and over again, Clifton was exhausted and mentally drained. Do we were doing was. were, Ashley put me in a setting and filling in blanks. I like one a day just said. You will drink you're stays at the drinks yet drinks. Were did you ever use? Bathroom He. Didn't go to pacify left. US A bathroom. Why he did was he put me he wanted to put me in the bathroom. He did it and then he wrote a statement to say it admit to clean it up far-left left. Clifton never had a lawyer with him during any of these interogations on top of that none of the conversations between him and the s B. I were ever recorded. There was no recordings of any of those conversations that I have with. Not, a single one. It had been then people would say that saying the things that they said I said. Every conversation he had with police was slowly becoming his word against theirs. As they wore him down and said, he felt like he had no choice. But to cooperate the more, he resisted the more the point the finger at him and put words in his mouth. Finally, he felt the only way to clear his name was to do what they asked. At eight o'clock that night February Eighth SBA agents ask Clifton to go with Dimaggio they wanted him to show them the exact route he said he took from Stacy's apartment to Wayne's trailer. According to their own reports, the SBA transported Clinton from Columbia and drove him to manual. Now, this is wrong for one huge reason. They didn't have the authority to do that. The Sheriff of Tarot County never signed off on a prisoner transport order Clifton meaning the s I couldn't just take a terrible county prisoner and move them into another jurisdiction for an investigation that had nothing to do with the drug charges clicked was facing technically Clifton was a prisoner of Tarot county waiting to be extradited back to New Jersey. So, by removing him from Columbia and taking him to dare county for the murder investigation that violated protocol and violated the law. But these sa aren't following what you call standard procedure. At this point I mean, they've already interrogated the man multiple times without letting him contact an attorney and they're not recording any of the interviews they've had with him. Now they're taking him on a ride thirty minutes away to isolated. Lifton says that car ride made him nervous because he didn't know these. SB agents or what they were going to do. Even though he had a criminal history and Tarot County, he at least knew the sheriff there and there was familiarity up until this point, he said the Sheriff and Columbia had been really cool with him at the jail a made sure that he was comfortable entreated in like a normal person not a murder suspect. As the car pulls out of Columbia, Clifton is headed away from any law enforcement. He knows and he's going to dare county to try and convince the SBA agents that he's innocent. Once they arrive in Mankato he rides along with the FBI and shows them the path that he took on foot from the pub to stacy's apartment, and then to his friend Wayne's. I wanted to see this path for myself. So I took a trip up to manlio. Turn left onto. Queen. Elizabeth Avenue. Then turn left onto an-and is dare street. In a quarter mile destination will be on the left. It was important. I retrace Clinton steps so I could understand exactly what he told investigators. What I found was that the walk from the Green Dolphin pub to stacy's would have taken him only a few minutes seven at most the walk from Stacy's to Wayne's would have been longer more like fifteen minutes. The locations aren't super far apart, but it was easier for me to just drive there. Let's plug in the. Address to Wayne Morris as house. From here. So Wayne lived exactly point seven miles from face apartment on the ice gear street. OVER DOWN Just a little bit a two minute drive. Says Thirteen minute walk. Clifton told the FBI that as he walked to Wayne's he crossed over US sixty four head west Ananias dare street toward US sixty, four east then turn right onto us sixty, four west. Then he cut behind the Elizabethan in hotel went through some trees and ended up at the back of Wayne's trailer. The Elizabethan in is still operating today and the property looks almost exactly the same as it did in nineteen ninety. So he cut through the back, the Elizabeth and he could have gotten away is actually faster than the route were taking drive because we're taking the roads. But if you're on foot, you could cut back behind the end and then through a small little stretch of woods and clipped would've come right up to Wayne's trailer. Wayne says his trailer was trailer sixty, two on. Jackson Street which this is. All right. This is all like a trailer park neighborhood. So trailer sixty, two, trailers sixty, two there it is. A new family lives in Wayne's trailer now but seeing where it was located really was helpful for me. The area was right next to my old high school and a mile from my parents house it somewhere driven probably hundreds of times. So I started to think what had the SBA I agents in Clifton done at this point thirty years prior to me standing there what was their next move? If it were me I'd have taken Clifton back to Colombia and seen one of their leads I could follow up on but that wasn't what happened. Instead the agents took Clifton to a trailer a little ways up the road. It was an old building dare county used as an offsite drug investigations bureau. Inside the dingy trailer worth you chairs a table and more. FBI agents. And they took me to is also said I guess the undercover truck enforcement from the sheriff's department uses us either on airport, road. They took me in an office. and. ages, I didn't know never saw him. And they just sent me just kept talking about this. You'RE GONNA. Say this say I said that you know whatever our say. They would Ashley Trial and something to would have agents left me in the room. You know handcuffs saw and there was a rifle sitting right beside I don't know if bullets what I still they don't see for trying trying to send me up here. And I told them, I wanted to go back to Columbia. But, Clifton didn't go back to Colombia. He sat a not office and endured another interrogation that lasted four hours. The SBA I pushed him hard even bring up his criminal history from when he served in the army. You see Clifton had been charged and convicted of assaulting one of his former girlfriend's while stationed in Germany many years earlier. In that attack, he admitted to using a pair of scissors. The S. B. I hammered him about this detail and they suggested that he had attacked Stacey in a similar way except this time he used a knife. Again Clifton denied that, but the pressure was becoming overwhelming and he had nothing left. Day agent kept asking me same question over and over again. I said Man I don't toe you. Kept, telling I kept telling. Asked me they're saying question. Probably about the ten eleven time. I just didn't say anything. I just took a deep breath and just helmet he. Age and said, I, should be yes. The other agents said that he saw me. To, apparently, he must the same through the wall. said that I should be yeah I didn't do that. Say Thank you for what? Did. He said you know like count. Feel bad for what you know this when you come. At nonsense. The FBI agents wrote in their report that Clifton slumping his head in exhaustion was confirmation to them that he had nodded yes to what they were accusing him of, and that was as good as a confession. That's when they wrap up the interrogation and transport him back to Columbia around midnight. Finally on February ninth. Clifton father shows up to the jail with a local attorney from Columbia. This attorney, a man by the name of Charles Ogle tree talks with Clifton for a while and shuts down any more one on one interrogation with the FBI. But at that point, the damage had already been done a lot of damning information against Clifton information that they use to request an arrest warrant for first degree murder. They went to the district attorney on February ninth and explain to their case so far but the DA said no way he said there was not enough sufficient. To, arrest, Clifton for the crime and he pushed back saying that the FBI I needed to dig further and do actual detective work to prove their case not just keep interrogating Clifton. But while they had to wait for forensic evidence to be processed the pressure to make an arrest was mounting, and this is where the FBI and local investigators really dug their heels in. They wanted to find anything that supported Clifton was there man instead of going back and talking with witnesses like Terry, Williams and Tina and Mike Brandon, they visit Wayne Morris. The one man who is supposedly Clifton Alibi or at least someone who would have had direct contact with Clifton shortly after the murder. I found Wayne earlier this year and he still lives in a trailer in Mankato, but just not the same one as he did in nineteen ninety. And what he told me as we sat in his living room, blew my mind. Wayne Morris was the first person to see Clifton Spencer after he left Stacy's apartment. The FBI visited Wayne when they realized they needed more evidence in order for the DA to give them an arrest warrant for Clifton. This cop come combine my house. And said, he needed to talk to me that's talked to me about what? He said, are you new Clifton? Sea Cliff name and I say yes. He said what was he by Your House? It's time and I said, yes, he came by you know told a one time. These cops came in the house two of them. As I recall they talked to me for a long the guy asked me did I mind him walking around my house on new he won't run a house and he found his own knife or Lane there I had found I was GONNA clean up. Any show man and he's been idea for she probably a year maybe you know just been laying up on trailer he said Okay I'll put it about what was that The agents came inside and asked Wayne if you tell them what he remembered when Clifton came by so we did. From. My back door and I said, Oh man who is this a man's me cliff. Do I saw may be He'd been central geeked up you know he's mad at me craftsmen agrees. To do. 'cause it every night. Then trip withdraw by me in the crash. He had been out all night partying and will wanted to go to Columbia. So he has could crash Tilles ride. That's you know I'm going to go to work. When Clifton showed up, did he have any blood on him? No, he was just highs hair excuse me he would just. Goal, man knowing he no blood on. Who sitting in my recliner. Sleep when I live. And you want to save some blood this their head is nice. Little shirt and these genes. Oh Man, that's what I remember. So clearly Wayne still feels the same way as he did back then when I compared what he told me in our interview with transcripts from the conversation, he had with the S B I thirty years ago his story hasn't changed. It's almost word for word the same. He remembers clearly that Clifton got to his house between four and five in the morning. Any also remembers clearly what the SBA. I asked him to do after I came to his trailer as me what I wanted to take all live -tective. Let's say sure in took one at the ducal has closed down. But I took a lie detector test there. And Soon Mike Agreement I took a lie detector test twice. That's right. The S I had Wayne go to a motel and Manlio a place that's a dilapidated rat trap now, and they wanted him to undergo a polygraph and took the test them. No matter what are not gonna live. Why don't notice girl beat new cliff new girl on a new cliff or with party down here I. See I think they just wanted wanting to take that test because he told our. Trying, to hide some cliff maybe but I told it was man. Got Me taking this this test because the GonNa, try to lie for him but I told him. Amen the guy came by inquest at my house like he does all the. Wayne passed his polygraph with flying colors. The FBI found no signs of deception in anything that he'd said. And the fact that he'd been so open to talking with me about the case makes me believe he's telling the truth I mentioned to him. I'd found an SBA agents report in my research that claimed forensic tax had sprayed luminol in his living room and on his recliner to look for blood. I wanted to know if Wayne remembered that but his answer wasn't what I expected at all. At you. And that was it and then we'll come did new. Forensic. Not that man. That was a direct contradiction to what I read with my own eyes in the SBI's documents. So either Wayne is isn't remembering it right or the NC B. fudged this detail. But why why would they lie about that something so critical. And why haven't they looked at anyone else but clifton? Those another person I thought was on the radar that was never really. vetted. I? Need. The answers are next week on counterpart. All the tall seen. Never seen a trial like this. Be Sure to follow counterclockwise on social media and subscribe on Apple Podcasts spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. Counter clock is an audio chuck original show. Ashley Flowers is the executive producer and all reporting in hosting is done by me dealing.

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