Jan. 29, 1997 Witness Testifies At Final Day Of Tapp Hearing

Also On Stand: Fmr. Bonneville County Prosecuting Attorney Kipp Manwaring

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - The prosecution and defense called out their final witnesses Thursday in the evidentiary hearing of a man who confessed to the 1996 murder of an Idaho Falls woman.

Angie Dodge was raped and murdered in her apartment on I Street in Idaho Falls, and nearly 15 years ago Tapp was convicted solely on his confession to police. This week?s hearing was intended to define whether or not Tapp was in custody at the time of the interrogation.

June Bloxham Nielsen, Dodge?s landlord, described Tapp?s behavior when detectives Jared Fuhriman (now mayor of Idaho Falls) and Steve Finn brought Tapp to the apartment.

?All the color had drained out of his face,? she said. ?I think it was Detective Fuhriman standing in front and then the other two were behind him.?

In testimony Wednesday, Fuhriman said Tapp led detectives up the stairs. The defense wanted to establish Tapp between the two detectives, scared and feeling unable to leave.

Former county Prosecutor Kipp Manwaring also testified.

Defense attorney John Thomas quoted a point during a videotaped interrogation between Fuhriman and Tapp in which Fuhriman alluded to the possibility of a new immunity agreement.

Thomas asked Manwaring if he had told Fuhriman if that was possible.

?I don?t recall that conversation, no,? said Manwaring.

After the hearing wrapped up Thursday, Prosecutor Bruce Pickett said the last two days of testimony didn?t produce any surprises.

?The goal in any case is to get to the truth and to let the witnesses testify to what they remember,? he said.

Closing arguments will be submitted in writing after reviewing the transcript from the hearing.

It may take several months to get Judge Joel Tingey?s opinion on whether to throw out the confession. Pickett said the decision is likely to be appealed.

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