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Criminal Law Keyed to Gershowitz
State v. Disanto
Citation:2004 SD 112, 688 N.W.2d 201.
The defendant and Linda Olsen lived together for two years and were engaged for a short time. Their relationship ended and Linda entered into a relationship with Denny Egemo. The defendant began making threatening telephone calls to Olson and Egemo. He told a woman that he planned “to shoot his ex-girlfriend, to kill her, to shoot her new lover in the balls so that he would have to live with the guilt, and then he was going to kill himself.” The woman contacted a hotel security officer who in turn called the police, and the defendant was arrested and a loaded .25 caliber pistol was taken from him.
While in jail, defendant met Stephen Rynders. He told Rynders of his intention to murder Olson and her boyfriend. Rynders gave this information to law enforcement and an investigation began. Upon defendant’s release, Rynders, acting under law enforcement direction, picked defendant up and offered him a ride. At the suggestion of the investigators, Rynders told defendant that he should hire a contract killer who Rynders knew in Denver.
On the afternoon of June 11, 2002, Rynders and Dale McCabe, a law enforcement officer posing as a killer for hire from Denver, met twice with defendant. Defendant showed McCabe several photos of Olson, pointed out her vehicle, led him to the location of her home, and even pointed Olson out to him as she was leaving her home.
The defendant told McCabe, “I want her and him dead.” If Olson’s teenage daughter happened to be present, then defendant wanted her killed too. He suggested that the murders should appear to have happened during a robbery. Because defendant had no money to pay for the murders, he suggested that jewelry and other valuables in the home might be used as partial compensation. He told McCabe that the boyfriend, Egemo, was known to have a lot of cash. Defendant also agreed to pay for the killings with some methamphetamine he would later obtain. The defendant told him that he was sure that he wanted this.
Less than three hours later, however, defendant, seeking to have a message given to McCabe, called Rynders telling him falsely that Olson had spotted McCabe’s car with its Colorado plates, that Olson had “called the cops,” that defendant was under intense supervision, and that now the police were alerted because of defendant’s threat against Olson on the street. All of this was untrue. Defendant’s alarm about police involvement was an apparent ruse to explain why he did not want to go through with the killing.
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