|Posted by DRIESA on April 17, 2014 at 3:45 AM|
Testimonies on Brandon Teena's death.
September 19, 2007 - Lincoln Journal.
Marvin Thomas “Tom” Nissen recanted his testimony in a 2½-page affidavit he gave July 23 to an attorney representing Lotter in a federal court appeal: - " I am the person who shot and stabbed Brandon Teena".
Brandon’s mother, JoAnn Brandon, was shocked to hear the news and said she hopes Lotter will not walk free as a result. - "I think it’s really sad,” she said Wednesday evening. I don’t understand what Nissen is getting out of it.”
In a recent interview, Nissen described the affidavit as “true and correct.” But the 35-year-old former Falls City man also said Lotter helped plan the killings and was at the rented farmhouse when they occurred.
“Lotter is a major participant in the case in either version,” Judge Kenneth Stephan said.Now, Richardson County District Judge Daniel Bryan must consider whether to grant Lotter a new trial based upon Nissen’s own words. A hearing to submit legal briefs and documentation should take place. As for why Nissen decided to change his story, he initially said he didn’t know, then he said, “I guess it just took me that long to come to terms with what I had done and who I am.”
In November 1993, Brandon, who had recently moved to Richardson County from Lincoln, fell into their circle of friends, dating a woman they both knew.Lotter and Nissen befriended Brandon, but their friendship abruptly ended when they learned about Brandon’s biological gender. Angry over being duped, Nissen said, they assaulted, kidnapped and raped the 21-year-old , in Lincoln in the early morning hours of Christmas Day.The men soon learned Brandon had reported the rapes. According to Nissen’s testimony, they killed Brandon to derail the rape investigation, and they killed Lambert and DeVine to eliminate witnesses to the murder.
“It appears to this panel that without Marvin Nissen’s testimony the case against John Lotter was largely circumstantial and that there were some significant weaknesses in the evidence against Lotter,” the judges wrote in their sentencing order.
In fact, investigators found no fingerprints, footprints or tire tracks to link Lotter to the crime scene. A hair found on Brandon’s wrist wasn’t his. The only living witness besides the killer was Lambert’s 8-month-old son.
But witnesses saw Lotter in the home from which the murder weapon was stolen hours before the killings. And the knife used to stab Brandon had the name “Lotter” on the sheath.