But Martin told investigators several different stories, and the last version the one that she stuck with in court implicated East.
was more like my child instead of my brother, Huff said last week.
When he was 13, he bought a Galaxie 500 for $50, which he earned mowing yards, picking up cans and selling newspapers, he said. He couldn see through the windshield, so he sat on a phone book to drive.
does she have to be afraid of me for? East told the Reporter News. is no reason or no alarm for her to be afraid of me. If anything, she should be afraid of the district attorney. They the one that concocted this story. They the one who manipulated her. They the one who tried to manipulate me into testifying against her. up in Abilene
It was Martin testimony that placed East on death row.
Exactly 30 years after relatives found Mary Eula Sears beaten and bloody body stuffed in a closet in her Sayles Boulevard home, the man accused of killing her reflected on the series of events that led to what he says is his wrongful conviction.
What if he hadn insisted on picking up an order of his wife favorite french fries and chicken wings from the C Lounge that night?
What if, while waiting for the food, he had never run into his cousin Troy Robinson, who invited him to join a dominoes game at a friend house later that night?
What had those sad brown eyes, now staring through a pane of glass, seen three decades before?
Their mother ran a tight ship, East and Huff said.
What if he hadn been so quick to volunteer to take Dee Dee Martin, then 17, home after she cut her ankle on a sprinkler the morning of Nov. 23, and what if he hadn borrowed Robinson flashy green car to make the trip with Martin after the dominoes game broke up?
guess that with every kid, East said. tell them not to do something, that the very thing they basically end up doing. friend of East drowned at the lake, and Rhodes tore into her son for disobeying her, he said.
Abilene investigators interviewed by the magazine said Martin probably is changing her account because she fears retribution from East when Omega Seamaster Black Rubber Strap
Huff, the oldest of the eight, had a baby of her own by the time East was born, and she lived elsewhere.
East said he was a gifted athlete when he was younger, and many people kept an eye on his performance in football, track and basketball.
missing questions, East said. She regularly listened to religious music, and games like dominoes, cards and Monopoly Omega Speedmaster Racing Chronograph were forbidden.
Mina Huff, one of East half sisters who still lives in Abilene, said the eight children all shared Isabella Rhodes for a mother, but some of them had different fathers. Rhodes are deceased, and East said he does not know who his biological father is. He and his attorneys tried to find his father during his stint on death row, but the investigation became too expensive, and it fizzled.
do you be that coldblooded to sit up and tell somebody a lie, and it dealing with a person life? East said as he pondered his feelings toward Martin. is not just like you are sending me to prison for 10 or 15 years; you sending me to my death. And you convinced a jury of 12 people by those words. to a 12 page story about the Sears murder published recently in Texas Monthly, Martin has recanted her version of events and has said that she was never in the home with East. Rather, she said she was pushed by investigators and prosecutors to put the blame on East, or else, she was told, she would wind up on death row with him.
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After all, it was Martin that placed East at Sears home, holding a knife and demanding to know where the prominent Abilene artist kept her jewelry.
She required her children to go to church, and she often tested their knowledge of the books of the Bible, punishing them for Omega Speedmaster 3539.50
He routinely played football with his friends in the street in front of his house. His mother, Isabella Rhodes, cooked up big batches of fried chicken to feed the children, and she kept them hydrated while they played. Rhodes, who was Sears yardman.
It wasn the last time he got in trouble with his mother.
Rhodes would tell her children not to go to Lake Fort Phantom Hill because it was dangerous, but East and his friends went anyway.
claims he did not kill Mary Sears
free after first serving on death row and then a life sentence for Sears murder, the 61 year old East maintained his innocence and wondered what his life may have been like had he made a few different decisions the night of Nov. 22, 1981.
They certainly didn see the inside of Sears home that morning, East said on the 30th anniversary of the murder.
Nestled in the tall pines of East Texas, the Polunsky Unit seems a world away from the barren landscape that served as a backdrop for East childhood in Abilene.
he released from prison.
East said he took Martin home in Robinson green Buick and immediately returned the car to Robinson.
Wearing a white jumpsuit and thin wire frame glasses, Wayne East recently talked about his life and near death in an interview in a small cell in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Polunsky Unit in Livingston.
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