Man admitted murders, couple says

Sept. 20, 2012 at 2:20 PM
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CHARLOTTE, N.C., Sept. 20 (UPI) -- A Charlotte, N.C., man, a suspect in an infamous 1970 triple homicide, confessed to a couple a year or two after another suspect was convicted, they said.

Former Green Beret Jeffrey MacDonald was convicted in 1979 in the Fort Bragg, N.C., murder of his wife and two daughters, but has held to his court room claim that four intruders conducted the massacre.

John and Chris Griffin came forward this week to say John Mitchell, an electrician who did work for the Griffins, told them after drinking at their home in the early 1980s he was the killer, the Charlotte Observer reported Thursday.

Their account of the confession has no legal standing and is another piece of uncorroborated evidence in a case that continues in a North Carolina federal court this week as MacDonald requests a new trial, the newspaper said.

After reading accounts of MacDonald's upcoming hearing, Chris Griffin said, "We thought, you know, that we should tell somebody. We had tried before. Apparently they don't want to hear it."

Mitchell died in 1982 at age 31. He passed a polygraph test in 1971 indicating he had nothing to do with the murders, but in his later years told friends he had done something terrible in the past. In a 1984 FBI affidavit, his widow said her husband never spoke about the case except to say he had been interviewed as a suspect by the FBI, the newspaper said.

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