Monday, February 19, 2018

Warrant: Kilgore woman admitted to fatally stabbing mother

By Meredith Shamburger
Jan. 10, 2017 at 11:16 p.m.

Kayla Ann Wheeler (Gregg County Jail photo)

While admitting to stabbing her mother to death, Kayla Ann Wheeler told police she didn't have a good relationship with her mother and blacked out after the incident, arrest reports show.

"Wheeler said her mother kept calling the cops on her, and had people with guns on her, and kept doing things to her, and she had to make it stop," reports said.

"She said she didn't want to. Wheeler told Affiant that she made her stop by killing her."

A search warrant returned Friday provides new details in the death of Elizabeth Jane Wheeler, 52, at the Hidden Hills Apartments on Gilmer Road. Elizabeth Wheeler's body was found Nov. 3 at her apartment by a representative from the apartment complex.

Wheeler, 28, has been charged with murder in connection with the case. She remained Tuesday in the Gregg County Jail on $150,000 bond. Elizabeth Wheeler's death was the city's 11th homicide of 2016.

Longview police said they believed Elizabeth Wheeler's body had been in her apartment for several days before it was found.

An autopsy conducted at the Tyler Forensic Center determined she died from multiple stab wounds, and Elizabeth Wheeler was identified by her fingerprints.

A woman living above Elizabeth Wheeler's apartment told police the Saturday before she "heard some thumping noises from the apartment below her and also heard the patio door being opened," according to the warrant.

"She described the thumping noise as happening about six times around 8:30 p.m., lasting for a few seconds," the warrant said.

The woman "said she frequently saw Elizabeth walking around the complex, but had not seen her in the last couple of days" and "started smelling something that smelled like sewer."

Police also spoke to a health care worker the day Elizabeth Wheeler's body was found. The health care worker "said the last time she saw Elizabeth was sometime last week," police said.

The health care worker told police that Elizabeth Wheeler had kicked out her daughter recently and that sometimes when Wheeler was on drugs she would assault her mother, according to the warrant.

Longview police said Kayla Wheeler arrived at her mother's apartment and began asking about her mother while they were investigating the death. Police spoke with her at the department's Criminal Investigations Building.

When told her mother was dead, Wheeler "did not show any emotion," police said, and she also denied knowing why police would want to talk with her.

Initially, Wheeler told police she could not remember the last time she saw her mother and told them she blacks out whenever she is sleeping on the streets, police said. Later, Wheeler told police the last time she remembered seeing her mother was when her mother called police to report her as trespassing.

According to police, Wheeler said her mother "would call the police and just make up stuff about her." Wheeler told officers "her mother would already be dead or someone else would have killed her as much as she has lied and called the cops," the arrest report said.

Wheeler told police she did not have a good relationship with her mother.

When police pressed Wheeler about her mother's death, Wheeler told them "I think it mighta been a accident," she didn't know why she would say that, she thought she was dreaming it and she had blacked out, the arrest report said.

Wheeler told police she thought she had stabbed her mother once, that it was self-defense because her mother had a knife, too, and that she had made her mother get into bed before stabbing her.

"Wheeler said that her mother was harassing her and (messing) with her but wasn't doing anything physically to her when Wheeler stabbed her," police said.

Wheeler told police about the knife used in the attack: a pocket knife she carried and had to get rid of while staying at the Salvation Army. Police said officers also found Wheeler had her mother's food stamp card and her mother's phone.



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