OGDEN DEFENDANT ADMITTED KILLING A GIRL, INMATE SAYS

Published: Saturday, Dec. 2 1989 12:00 a.m. MST

An inmate at the Weber County Jail testified Friday that John Albert Taylor admitted accidentally killing a young girl.

Taylor, 30, Ogden, is on trial for capital murder in the June 23 sexual assault and strangulation death of Charla King. The nude body of the 11-year-old Washington Terrace girl was found with panties stuffed in her mouth and a telephone cord wrapped around her neck.The case is being heard by 2nd District Judge David Roth, and if convicted, Taylor could be sentenced to die.

Taylor was arrested after his fingerprints were found on the bottom of the telephone, whose cord had been cut and used to strangle the girl. Defense attorney Don Redd said Taylor will testify on his own behalf and admit to being in the apartment but only to commit a burglary, not to kill King.

Taylor is scheduled to take the witness stand Monday morning.

The state wrapped up its case Friday after Roth heard testimony from Mike Gallegos, 30, Roy, that Taylor had told him he killed a girl.

Gallegos is in the Weber County Jail for bad check writing, and he is allowed to leave the jail on work release.

He said he was changing into his work clothes on Nov. 20, when he saw Taylor taking a shower on the main floor of the jail.

"He (Taylor) asked me if I was getting out of jail and I told him no, that I was going to work," Gallegos said.

The inmate said Taylor then asked him what size pants and shoes he wore.

Gallegos said he asked Taylor why he was in jail and Taylor replied for homicide.

"He (Taylor) said he killed a girl, but it was by accident," Gallegos said.

The inmate said he was told to leave the area and he did. Then last Wednesday, Gallegos said he read about the murder trial and found out that King was killed by strangulation.

"It didn't sound like an accident to me," Gallegos said. He said he then contacted the Weber County attorney's office to relay the conversation he had had with Taylor.

Gallegos said that no promises were made with him by the county attorney's office in exchange for his testimony.

A defense witness, Robert Braswell, also testified Friday that he was taken into custody and questioned about the King murder shortly after the killing occurred. He said he was released after police discovered his fingerprints did not match those found on the telephone.

Braswell admitted to calling a friend of his and telling her that he was going to confess to the crime. She later turned him in.

Braswell said that he was depressed because he wanted to get back with his estranged girlfriend, and that's why he told his other friend that he was going to confess to the murder and be sent to death row.

"I've never been in that (King's) apartment," Braswell said. "As a matter of fact, I've never seen that little girl."

Lori Ellingford, Braswell's friend, also took the witness stand and said that Braswell had called her on the telephone and that he said he wanted to confess to the murder. She said Braswell seemed suicidal to her.

Washington Terrace Police Officer Lloyd Davis said that he received an anonymous telephone call from a woman who told him that Braswell may have committed the murder.

"She said he has a thing for young girls 12 to 14 years old," Davis said.

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