INDEPTH | Inmates say Stanley Dishon said he killed niece, Jessica, to stop her from revealing sex abuse
LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- Two inmates who served time with Stanley Dishon say he confessed to confronting and then strangling his niece, Jessica Dishon, on Sept. 10, 1999, out of anger, jealousy and fear that she was going to reveal that he had been having sex with the 17-year-old.
"He thought she was about ready to turn him in for molesting her," an inmate identified only as "witness Y" told Bullitt Sheriff's Det. Lynn Hunt on July 26. "She was getting tired of him having sex with her and she was going to tell."
The audio interviews of the inmates - who served with Stanley Dishon at the Kentucky State Reformatory and are identified only as witness "X " and "Y" - as well as an interview with Stanley Dishon, in which he denies killing his niece, were released Thursday in Bullitt Circuit Court in Dishon's murder case.
In a nearly two-hour interview with Louisville and Bullitt County detectives, Stanley Dishon, repeatedly denied any involvement in Jessica's murder, having sex with the teen or talking with inmates about the case, saying he hadn't heard or talked about the murder for 14 years and was working the day of the crime.
"Every bit of that is a lie," he said of the inmate statements to police. "Every bit of it."
Told about evidence investigators had against him, Stanley Dishon ‘s voice rose, "I don't care what you got. I did not do anything to harm my niece. I know that. … I did not murder my niece. I am innocent."
The two inmates had similar stories, to a point, saying Dishon separately told them he went to confront his niece at her school, angry about her having a boyfriend, but didn't see her vehicle and then went to the teen's home on Deatsville Road in Bullitt County.
Both inmates said Jessica and her uncle argued in her backyard and Stanley told them he was jealous of the new boyfriend, feared she was going to reveal the sexual abuse and began choking her. The inmates said Stanley Dishon told them he then went back into the home and got a scarf and strangled Jessica before then cutting her with a knife and later putting her body in a brush pile near water.
Inmate X provided more information, speaking with investigators three times with additional – and sometimes contradictory - details in each interview, saying Stanley Dishon had given him more information.
Inmate X said Jessica learned her uncle had molested his own daughter and stepdaughter and wanted nothing more to do with him and "was going to tell." (A decade ago, Stanley Dishon pleaded guilty to charges that he sexually abused his daughter and step-daughter. And recently he was indicted for allegedly forcing a family member to have sex between 1982 and 1987.)
The two argued, Inmate X told investigators, and he allegedly chased her around her yard, adding that he "strangled that little b***," stabbed her and put her body in a vehicle and hid her under a brush pile by water. The inmate also said Stanley Dishon was scratched during the fight with Jessica and was scared that neighbors may have seen the murder.
Jessica's body was found 17 days later in that wooded area a few miles from her home known as the river bottoms. Inmate X told investigators he was surprised that a bus driver spotted Jessica's body.
In a second interview with inmate X, after he said he spoke with Dishon again recently, X told investigators Stanley Dishon said he strangled Jessica with a scarf, cut her throat and "had to dismember" Jessica in order to move her body.
And he said Stanley Dishon said he took the scarf, her shoes and a pair of her panties.
Inmate X asked Hunt if Jessica was "chopped up" when her body was found and Hunt said the teen was missing a foot and some fingers but was not dismembered.
And he asked Hunt if investigators ever found Jessica's shoes. One shoe was found, the other missing, Hunt replied.
"He's got it," Inmate X said of the other shoe.
"Did they find her foot?," the inmate asked. "No," Hunt said.
The inmate also asked if Jessica's throat was cut and Hunt told him Jessica's body was decomposed after being outside for 17 days.
In a third interview, Inmate X said Stanley Dishon told him he kept Jessica in a cabin for a couple of days before killing her, "treating her like ****."
Both inmates also said Stanley Dishon told family members after she disappeared where Jessica would be found. Inmate X said Stanley Dishon called his brother Mike, Jessica's father, after the teen vanished and told him he had a "premonition" about where Jessica's body would be found.
Mike Dishon told police in a recent interview about the premonition, saying his brother told him Jessica was "buried in the river bottoms."
Because of that premonition, the family searched that area, but about two miles from where Jessica would later be found, Stanley had to leave because he was feeling sick, according to a summary of the Mike Dishon interview, which was released in the murder case last week.
In his interview, Stanley Dishon, who lived with the Dishon family for some time but moved out years before the murder, said a psychic at the time told the family Jessica was in a wooded area within a seven-mile radius and he suggested the river bottoms as a possibility.
Inmate X said Stanley Dishon talked about the murder several times and was consistent with his story, saying he was concerned authorities were gathering evidence against him and alleging state police had spoken with him about the crime.
"Personally, I've convicted him myself," Inmate X said. "I'm 100 percent sure."
"It all just fits together," Inmate X said at one point.
"It does fit," Hunt replied.
Inmate X also said Stanley Dishon "thought it was funny" police thought two other men were responsible for the murder, speaking apparently about James Coulter and Jason Dunford, who were seen with Jessica the night before she disappeared.
Hunt wrote in a summary of the investigation that Dunford and Coulter had already been cleared by the FBI and follow-up interviews with detectives.
There is no indication that state police ever interviewed Dishon.
Inmate X said "the commonwealth should do something for me" for giving them the information on Stanley Dishon and identifying the other inmate who Stanley also allegedly confessed to.
Hunt told the inmate she was making no promises to help him.
Stanley Dishon told Hunt and Louisville Metro Police Detective Gary Huffman that he heard about Jessica's disappearance from his brother Mike, who asked for help in searching for the teen.
Investigators say, however, that Mike Dishon did not tell his brother and that Stanley Dishon also lied about working the day Jessica disappeared and taking three weeks off work to help find her.
Hunt told Stanley Dishon she had evidence he had sex with his niece and confronted and killed her and that his cooperation could spare him the death penalty. Det. Huffman told him the case was going to move forward with or without Dishon's help and he needed to tell the truth, clear his conscious and give his family closure.
"The truth is I worked that day," Stanley Dishon said. "…I thought the world of Jessica."
Huffman told Dishon he didn't believe him.
"Well, I can't help you," he responded. "I have no idea what happened to her when she disappeared. None."
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