Rayond Wilson II: Three Life Sentences For East Texas Trailer Park Bloodbath
|Photo courtesy Angelina County Jail|
|Raymond Wilson II|
Late last week the accused in the case -- 46-year-old Raymond Wilson II -- took a plea deal granting him three concurrent life sentences in lieu of a trial that might have led to a death sentence.
In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, Julie Wilson, Wilson's niece, told the Lufkin Daily News that her uncle had flown into a blind rage after his ex-girlfriend, 42-year-old Lisa Zumwalt, confessed to him that she had slept with both of her housemates -- Sherry Wood, 47, and Douglas Wade, 65. All three were shot in the head in a trailer home in the Lufkin-area Rivercrest district.
"I believe he shot them and I believe I was on the phone with him because of the way he was acting. I could hear hollering in the background. They were all drunk," Julie Wilson told the Daily News. She went on to describe her uncle as a wonderful, compassionate man and said the shooting was very much out of character.
"The person he used to be is the world's greatest uncle," she said. "There's a lot of stories floating around out here that aren't true. The man sitting in the back of that car and three deceased people are the only ones who really know what happened."
Apparently so, because after his sentencing last week, Raymond's brother Tommy Wilson said that Julie Wilson's version of events wasn't quite complete. He says the sexual angle was not the primary or even much of a deciding factor in the triple homicide; rather, it was the unrelated fistfight he got into with Tommy Wilson's nephew. Some 25 minutes after that dust-up, Raymond was still in a blind, black-out rage. He went to Tommy's home and allegedly grabbed a .38 revolver and headed over to Zumwalt's domicile, where he allegedly found a drunken bacchanal in full swing.
"He wasn't right that night," Tommy Wilson told the Daily News. "He doesn't even know that he walked into my house and took the gun out of its holster."
Raymond Wilson claimed also not to have remembered shooting his ex-girlfriend and her two friends. "I wasn't right in the head," he said on the stand. Sporting Coke-bottle glasses and a well-scrubbed visage, Raymond Wilson looked almost nebbishy, a far cry from the battered, wild-haired, blotchy-faced dude the police snared back in December. Back then he looked like a whskey boat ruffian; at his trial, Wilson wouldn't have looked amiss behind the counter at Radio Shack.
Wilson said he was "very sorry for what I done," but Darlene Dominguez, Zumwalt's sister, was unmoved by the newly-convicted killer's remorse.
"You left such a void in our lives. She is finally free of you but at the ultimate cost -- her life. And by your hands, the ones she loved and trusted... I take satisfaction in the three life sentences, knowing that you'll die in prison. You will never come up for parole, but if you do, I will be right here making sure that you never get out."
And as Julie Wilson so memorably put it back in December, "There's nothing that nobody can say that take it back, that can bring the lives back, can't bring my uncle back," she told Lufkin's KLTV. "So what can be said? Another one bites the dust..."