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Local

Video: Adams admits to being in Dixon the day of murder

DIXON – Byron Adams wanted two things: to be moved into general population at the jail and to call the love of his life in Chicago.

If he got those things, he would "talk to y'all abut everything," he told police during a Sept. 17, 2009 interview.

Before he made the call, Adams admitted being in Dixon on 6 days earlier.

That's the day prosecutors say he suffocated Margaret Atherton, 35, in her home at 815 W. First St.

During previous interviews with police, Adams denied being in town that day more than 20 times, Police Chief Danny Langloss testified this morning.

Adams, 54, of Chicago, is being tried on three counts of first-degree murder in Atherton's death. Prosecutors say he bound her hands with a black necktie, put two rolled up socks in her mouth, put a pillowcase over her head and knotted it.

Police found her body in an upstairs bedroom an hour after a Dollar Tree employee found her purse in a trash bin behind the store.

She died from asphyxia and strangulation, a forensic pathologist testified Wednesday.

Most of this morning was spent watching a video of the final interview between Adams and Langloss on Sept. 17.

Adams, who by this time was charged with first-degree murder and appointed an attorney, had summoned Langloss to the jail to talk.

During the interview, Langloss told Adams that he thought he was a good guy, but that what he said in other interviews didn't match the evidence and witness accounts.

Langloss said he did not believe Adams went to Atherton's home that day intending to harm her. Rather, Langloss said, he thinks Adams was trying to "shut up" Atherton then "got the hell outta there." He said he didn't think Adams knew Atherton was dead when he left.

If that's he case, Langloss said, this may be an involuntary manslaughter case and he would talk to the state's attorney.

Before placing the call to Adams' ex-girlfriend, Langloss again asked Adams if he was in Dixon that day.

"Yeah, yeah," Adams replied.

Testimony resumed at 1:30 p.m. More of the interview will be played for the jury.

Katherine Sullivan, a forensic biologist with the state police crime lab in Joliet, testified this morning that she examined DNA that was on the pillowcase and the necktie used to bind Atherton's hands.

Sullivan said she discovered a mixture of DNA from two men: The major contributor was Atherton's husband, Ryan; the minor contributor was Adams.

Check back for updates.

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