Appeals Court upholds murder conviction

Published 7:20 pm Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Mississippi Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld the life sentence given Eddie Saucier, who was convicted in 2005 in Harrison County of murdering a Gulfport man.

Saucier was sentenced for the 2002 slaying of 83-year-old Dennis Wilson.

Wilson, a deacon at Mercy Seat Baptist Church, was an amputee confined to a wheelchair. Saucier often visited Wilson and drove him to take care of errands, authorities said.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Authorities said Wilson was found dead in bed with a pillow covering his face. He had been stabbed and robbed of an undetermined amount of cash.

Prosecutors said Saucier was linked to the crime by DNA evidence found at the scene and from a jailhouse snitch.

On appeal, Saucier contended prosecutors had no evidence to link him to the crime.

Saucier said his DNA was found on a bucket and nowhere else in Wilson’s apartment.

Saucier said the testimony of Gregory Clayton, a cellmate in Harrison County, was untrustworthy because Clayton was a convicted felon and was looking for favors from prosecutors. Clayton testified that Saucier admitted robbing and killing Wilson.

Appeals Court Judge William H. Myers, writing for the court, said the testimony of Clayton plus the DNA found at the crime scene were sufficient evidence to convict Saucier.

Myers said there was also testimony from another witness that Saucier had a large amount of cash in the days after Wilson’s murder.