News From Terre Haute, Indiana

State News

August 24, 2011

VIDEO: William Minnick resentenced for brutal 1981 crime

BEDFORD — The family of a slain 1976 Terre Haute South Vigo graduate breathed a collective sigh of relief Tuesday evening when the Greencastle man convicted of her brutal murder received a maximum 160-year prison sentence.

The resentencing of William A. Minnick in Lawrence Circuit Court likely assured that the man convicted of the 1981 murder of Martha Rushing Payne would not be released with “good time credit” from prison this coming October — or anytime before he turns 98.

In addition to his 60-year sentence for Payne’s murder, Judge Andrea McCord also sentenced Minnick to consecutive 50-year terms for rape and robbery, making him eligible for release in October 2061.

“Wrung out,” said Jim Payne said when asked how his testimony and Tuesday’s sentencing hearing affected him. A graduate of South Vigo himself, he had married Martha in June 1980. “But I’m relieved because we had this fear that the worst could happen. That he couldn’t get anything for rape and robbery.”

In fact, Payne said that Minnick’s statements during the hearing sounded to him almost like an apology and an admission of guilt.

“I felt that after all these years, he was almost ready to admit it,” Payne said of Minnick, who has proclaimed his innocence despite confessing to police shortly after the homicide.

Putnam County Prosecutor Timothy Bookwalter agreed.

“It sounded like he was admitting it,” Bookwalter said of Minnick’s statements to the judge.

“If a person could go back and change the past, he’d change the past,” Minnick said to Judge McCord when asked what he thought his sentence should be. “You can’t tell the victim’s family you are sorry, because the state will try to use that against you. But you are sorry.”

The judge also heard testimony from Martha Payne’s 81-year-old mother Eleanor Royer, her older sister Sharon Powell, Indiana State Police Detective Richard Rice, and retired police officer Jim Hendrich, who was a Putnam County Sheriff’s Deputy in 1981.

The hearing started almost an hour late, after Minnick became combative prior to the hearing, prompting his defense attorney to request a postponement in the hearing due to his mental health. The judge denied that request, and Minnick appeared attentive during the hearing.

Martha Payne’s family testified to the young woman’s vital lifestyle, and her mother Eleanor Royer said she discouraged her daughter from following her desire to help people by joining the Peace Corps.

“I thought it was dangerous,” Royer said. “Of course, she would still be living now probably if she had entered the Peace Corps.”

Her sister Sharon Powell said that coping with the memories of her cherished sister was like trying to live with a broken arm.

“You know you want to reach for those memories. How much do you want to reach for that when you know it’s going to be so painful,” Powell said, saying that the knowledge of what Martha endured in her torturous death clouds the good memories.

Martha Payne would be 53 now, but her life ended Oct. 26, 1981 in the Greencastle home that she and husband Jim had bought to renovate. Jim Payne asserts that Minnick stalked his wife in the days before the troubled teen entered the couple’s home to rape, stab, strangle and torture Martha.

Minnick, now 48, was only 18 at the time of the homicide. He was soon arrested and convicted by a jury of Payne’s murder while committing rape and robbery. He was given the death penalty.

But after a series of appeals, Minnick was found incompetent to be executed by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. His death-penalty decision was overturned in 2000, leaving Minnick with only the 60-year murder conviction. In July 2004, the Indiana Supreme Court ordered that Minnick be resentenced because his underlying sentence was no longer valid. Minnick was found incompetent to aid his legal counsel in his defense, having been diagnosed with schizophrenia while in prison. A competency hearing in March 2011 found him able to aid his counsel in the sentencing, leading up to Tuesday’s hearing.

Minnick indicated he would appeal the new sentence.

Prosecutor Bookwalter said he expects that the appeals court likely will uphold this new sentence.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
State News
  • State highway official leaving before review done

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A top Indiana transportation official who’s faced an ethics investigation of land purchases that benefited his family is leaving the agency.

    July 31, 2014

  • Pence pushing Medicaid alternative during DC trip

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is heading to Washington to seek federal approval of his proposed state-run alternative to traditional Medicaid in order to expand health care coverage for low-income residents.

    July 30, 2014

  • Pence leading annual governor’s motorcycle ride

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Mike Pence is leading the annual governor’s motorcycle ride from the Statehouse through southern Indiana.

    July 25, 2014

  • State asks judge to delay right-to-work ruling

    CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) — The Indiana attorney general’s office has asked a judge to put on hold his order striking down the state’s right-to-work law.

    July 25, 2014

  • Indiana chooses 5 counties for preschool program

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana’s three most populous counties are among five chosen for a pilot program that will allow low-income children in those areas to attend preschool as early as next year.

    July 22, 2014

  • More cases of chikungunya confirmed in Indiana

    INDIANAPOLIS — Six more Hoosiers have tested positive for the chikungunya virus, making a total of seven reported cases in the state. The majority of individuals have confirmed travel to the Caribbean, including four teens who were recently on mission trips to the area.

    July 17, 2014

  • Judge orders Indiana BMV to resume selling plates

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A Marion County judge has ordered the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles to resume issuing personalized license plates, but that doesn’t mean the agency will start doing so anytime soon.

    July 16, 2014

  • State reports budget surplus, $2 billion in reserves

    INDIANAPOLIS — As expected, the state closed its fiscal year with a budget surplus, due largely to spending cuts forced by Gov. Mike Pence.

    July 14, 2014

  • U.S. Attorney Hogsett announces resignation

    INDIANAPOLIS – Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced in a news release today his resignation from office, effective July 31, 2014.

    July 14, 2014

  • State reports West Nile virus-infected mosquitoes

    INDIANAPOLIS — State health officials confirmed the first signs of West Nile virus activity in Indiana for 2014. Mosquitoes in Marshall and Pike counties have tested positive for West Nile virus. There have been no reported cases of West Nile virus in humans in the state this year.

    July 9, 2014

  • Pence orders memorials for officers who died

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has declared this week an official period of mourning after the loss of three law enforcement officers in the line of duty over eight days.

    July 8, 2014

  • 051713 BAYH SMILE.jpg Former governor Bayh weighs decision to run again

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Evan Bayh is keeping Indiana Democrats on hold.
    Party loyalists longing for a political savior to retake the governor's office have been waiting on Bayh ever since he abruptly decided to leave the U.S. Senate and political life three years ago.

    July 8, 2014 3 Photos

  • Deal set in ex-schools chief Bennett’s ethics case

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana’s State Ethics Commission is considering a settlement in the ethics case against former state schools Superintendent Tony Bennett.

    July 7, 2014

  • Lawmakers returning for ’corrections’ day

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — State lawmakers are returning to Indianapolis for a day to fix critical mistakes left in the criminal sentencing overhaul legislation approved earlier this year.

    June 16, 2014

  • Constitutional convention backers meet in Indiana

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — About 100 lawmakers from 33 states are expected to gather at the Indiana Statehouse for discussions about how to call the first constitutional convention since the nation’s founding.

    June 12, 2014

  • Dickson stepping down as Indiana’s chief justice

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Dickson is stepping down from that role but will remain as an associate justice.

    June 11, 2014

  • 10-digit dialing in 812 area code soon mandatory

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana utility officials say 10-digit dialing in southern Indiana’s 812 area code will become mandatory in September.

    June 11, 2014

  • Audit: Nearly 275 in Indiana await 1st VA visit

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An audit of VA hospitals and clinics nationwide has found that nearly 275 Indiana patients are still waiting for initial appointments at facilities in Indianapolis and northern Indiana 90 days or more after requesting them.

    June 9, 2014

  • Jackpot growth slowing down for Hoosier Lotto

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — State lottery officials are blaming a big drop in ticket sales for a decision to slash the rate at which Hoosier Lotto jackpots grow.

    June 6, 2014

  • Our view: Throw open the doors

    As allegations and scandals continue to explode about hidden wait lists and cooked books at VA medical care facilities across the country, with hints of even more heinous findings to come, we have to wonder why it's business as usual in our nation's

    May 29, 2014

  • Indiana’s 4 largest cities see population surges

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — A new report by an Indiana University research group says Indiana’s four largest cities are in the midst of some big population increases.

    May 22, 2014

  • Appeals court: Students can sue over school attack

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The Indiana Court of Appeals says two students hurt in a school shooting can sue the school district over their injuries.

    May 20, 2014

  • State health commissioner urges hepatitis testing

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana’s health commissioner is urging Hoosiers to educate themselves about the dangers of viral hepatitis and to get tested for the disease.

    May 19, 2014

  • Zoeller: Robocall complaints are down in Indiana

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller says his office is receiving almost half as many complaints a month about robocalls as it did two years ago, but says there’s more work to be done.

    May 19, 2014

  • High court to hear appeal of right-to-work law

    MUNSTER, Ind. (AP) — The Indiana Supreme Court will hear arguments in September on Indiana’s appeal of a judge’s ruling declaring the state’s right-to-work law unconstitutional.

    May 9, 2014

  • Judge: Indiana must still recognize 1 gay marriage

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The state of Indiana must recognize a lesbian couple’s out-of-state marriage throughout their legal fight to have one of the women named as a spouse on her terminally ill partner’s death certificate, a judge ruled today. The Indiana attorney general’s office said it would appeal.

    May 8, 2014

  • Judge says Indiana BMV wrongly pulled ‘0INK’ plate

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A police officer has the right to buy a vanity license plate reading “0INK,” an Indiana judge has said in a ruling that extends far beyond one plate.

    May 8, 2014

  • Zoeller: Let legislatures choose Senate candidates

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — U.S. Senate candidates in Indiana would be nominated by the General Assembly instead of selected by voters in a primary if the state’s top legal officer has his way.

    May 5, 2014

  • Indiana, CDC push for more infant vaccinations

    AVON, Ind. (AP) — State and national health officials are pushing for parents to vaccinate their infants on time in the face of measles outbreaks.

    April 30, 2014

  • Painted bison to celebrate Indiana bicentennial

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Painted bison sculptures and quilted gardens are set to pop up in honor of Indiana’s bicentennial celebration.

    April 30, 2014

Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' 3 People Killed, Deputies Wounded in NC Shootout Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Raw: 16 Killed in Gaza Market Strike Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors
NDN Video
Famous Internet Cats Help Big Cause With Viral Video Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity