By GENE JOHNSON,Associated Press
SEATTLE (AP) — Authorities have recovered bloody clothing, a knife and stolen credit cards that they believe were in the possession of a couple accused of going on a deadly crime spree across the Pacific Northwest, according to an affidavit.
Prosecutors also say that one of the suspects, Holly Grigsby, claimed that she and her boyfriend, David “Joey” Pedersen, were heading to Sacramento, Calif., during their spree to “kill more Jews” when they were arrested last week in California. Pedersen is pictured right.
The pair, who have expressed white supremacist beliefs, are suspected of killing his father, David “Red” Pedersen, 56, and his wife Leslie, 69, about Sept. 26 in Everett, Wash., and, later, two other people, including a 19-year-old man they believed was Jewish.
The couple fled the state and, on Sept. 29, police found a backpack inside a garbage can in Corvallis, Ore., a deputy prosecutor wrote in a probable cause statement filed Monday in Washington state.
Inside were the bloody clothing, a knife and four credit cards belonging to the elder Pedersen and his wife, authorities said.
The couple faces charges of aggravated first-degree murder. They could face the death penalty if convicted. Their appointed attorney, Donald Wahlberg, said he did not know anything about the case beyond what had been reported.
In interviews with a reporter and police, the couple said they killed Pedersen's father because he molested two young relatives and killed his wife because she knew and still supported him.
Grigsby, 24, confessed during a five-hour, videotaped interview with Oregon state police, Snohomish County, Wash., deputy prosecutor Craig Matheson wrote in a probable cause statement.
Grigsby said the couple planned to travel from Oregon to visit Red Pedersen (pictured left) and his wife — and then kill him by shooting him in the back of the head as he was driving them to a bus station.
She said she was in the passenger seat and took the steering wheel after her boyfriend fired a shot to the back of his head. They then drove to the Pedersens' home in Everett.
Grigsby said she herself slit Leslie Pedersen's throat, and they headed south in Red's Jeep with his body inside.
They ditched the car off a steep embankment, and killed Cody Myers (right), who was on his way to a jazz festival on the Oregon coast, because his name sounded Jewish, according to Matheson's affidavit. Myers was a devout Christian.
When she was arrested, Grigsby said “the couple was on their way to Sacramento to 'kill more Jews,'” Matheson wrote.
Grigsby and Pedersen were arrested outside Yuba City, Calif., when a police officer spotted them in Myers' car. Authorities had been tracking them by use of stolen credit cards and had warned police in several states to be on the lookout for them.
Pedersen, 31, initially refused to talk with police, but on Saturday, he reconsidered.
He admitted murdering a man in Eureka, Calif., on Oct. 3 or 4, the probable cause statement said. The crime matched an open investigation into the death of Reginald Alan Clark, 53, who was found dead with a bullet wound to the head.
Police have not suggested a motive, but Clark is black.
On Sunday, Joey Pedersen, who has spent nearly half his life in prison, summoned a reporter for a California newspaper, the Appeal-Democrat, to the jailhouse for an interview and took “full responsibility” for “everything that's been reported.”
He said he killed his father because he had molested his older sister and an adopted cousin when they were young; that they had killed his dad's wife because she knew about the molestation but still supported him.
Pedersen said he expected to be charged with killing the “dead Negro” because “the bullet from my gun is in his head.”
Joey Pedersen has an extensive criminal history, having spent from age 16 to 31 behind bars, except for a one-year stretch. His convictions include assaulting a police officer and threatening a federal judge. He was released from prison in May.
Grigsby also spent time in prison beginning in 2006 for a variety of charges, including identity theft and unauthorized use of a vehicle. After completing probation, she served two years for identity theft. Even in prison, she got into trouble, including for assault.
Both share an interest in white supremacist ideology. Pedersen prominently displays a white supremacy tattoo on his neck. Grigsby's white supremacist leanings were made clear to fellow inmates at Oregon's women's prison.