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Thursday, August 13, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Son tells police he killed mother with frying pan, knife

The man accused of killing his mother last week and dumping her body in a recycling cart in the back of their home in north Spokane told police that he has multiple personality disorder.

William W. Bassett Jr., 54, was arrested Saturday on suspicion of second-degree murder. He had called police late Saturday morning to report his mother missing from the home they shared at 3423 W. Hoffman Ave.

But police learned after interviewing Bassett’s sisters that there had been tension between Bassett and his mother, Wanda Bush, 73, according to court documents.

Bush had reportedly threatened to kick him out of her house, court records say. He hadn’t allowed anyone to see her in the last week claiming she had the flu.

When police questioned Bassett he confessed to killing his mother with a frying pan and a knife on either Jan. 25 or 26, court records say.

He told investigators that after hitting her on the head with the frying pan, he stabbed her with a knife. The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled that Bush died from a blunt impact to the skull and stab wounds to the chest.

After killing her Bassett told investigators that he placed Bush in a bathtub full of water and deicer in hopes “that it would hide the smell.”

She remained in the tub until Thursday, at which time Bassett put the body in a heavy-duty construction bag and stuffed it into the recycling bin, along with her purse and other personnel items, court records say.

When asked why he killed her, Bassett told investigators that it was not premeditated and he wanted her to feel “happy and released” and “come out of her depression.”

When asked again why he killed her Bassett, said he saw a monster when he looked at her and was distressed by how much pain she was in and that “there was no hope or help for either one of them,” according to court documents.

Ernest Bergeron, a neighbor, said Bassett and Bush were quiet neighbors and never caused problems. Although he hardly knew them he said he was under the impression that Bush was disabled and couldn’t walk.

Bush had lived in the North Spokane home since 2003.

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