Taylor Schabusiness Murder Trial: Judge Allows Alleged Confession, Meth-Fueled Sex Assault of Corpse Charge

Taylor Schabusiness and her attorney filed a motion asking the judge in the case to have comments she made to her arresting officer as well as the detective who later interrogated withheld from the jury because she was under the influence of meth.

Statements made by a Wisconsin woman who police say confessed to the meth-fueled murder and decapitation of her lover as well as the sexual assault of the young man’s corpse will be admissible at the upcoming trial.

Taylor Schabusiness and her attorney filed a motion asking the judge in the case to have comments she made to her arresting officer as well as the detective who later interrogated withheld from the jury because she was under the influence of methamphetamine and the powerful sedative Trazodone at the time.

The judge denied that motion, along with another asking that the sexual assault charge be dropped because the victim was already dead when she allegedly committed that crime. The defense also argued that it would be impossible to prove the assault since the victim’s genitals had been mutilated when police discovered the body.

Both rulings were made after the court heard testimony from both Officer Garth Russell and Detective Kevin Kempf.

Officer Russell arrested Schabusiness and testified that she appeared calm and did not appear to be under the influence of drugs while he took her into custody.  

Once in custody, Det. Kempf testified that he informed Schabusiness of her Miranda rights, after which she willingly submitted to an interrogation. Detective Kempf also testified that Schabusiness did not request a lawyer at any point while being questioned.  

"She was able to sit in a chair, talk to us, collect her thoughts, repeat and be able to clearly tell us things that matched what we later found on scene," Det. Kempf said on Tuesday.

According to the criminal complaint filed in Brown County Circuit Court, Schabusiness allegedly admitted to killing Shad Thyrion during that interrogation,

She also allegedly told detectives that she sexually abused his corpse before dismembering his body with a bread knife.

“Schabusiness responded that the police were going to have fun trying to find all of the organs,” wrote Caleb Saunders, assistant district attorney for Brown County, in the complaint.

“Schabusiness stated all of the body parts should be in the basement. Schabusiness stated there should be a foot or a leg in the minivan. Detective Graf asked Schabusiness what she did with the head, and Schabusiness stated she had put the Victim’s head in a black bucket and put a blanket over it,” reads the complaint. "Schabusiness stated the plan was for her to bring all of the body parts with her but she got lazy and only ended up putting the leg/foot in the van and she forgot the head."

Thyrion's mother first found her son's head when she went downstairs to check on him after Schabusiness allegedly left the home.

The defense called just one witness to the stand on Tuesday, Dr. James O'Donnell. He testified that Schabusiness' prolonged drug use impacted her ability to consent and fully understand her Miranda rights.

"She was acutely methamphetamine toxic, intoxicated and impaired at the time of the alleged crimes and during the period of her interrogation," said O'Donnell. "In terms of her ability to form consent and waive consent for Miranda and the meth and the marijuana — both impair the ability to deliberate, to consider consequences, to form memories and to recall memories."

Schabusiness' statements to police could prove to be damning in court.

“Schabusiness stated she then began to choke the Victim, and she described it as the Victim lying face down on the bed with her on top of him pulling on the end of the chain. The Victim coughed up blood and she was just waiting for him to die while she was watching his face. Schabusiness made the comment that she was ‘already this far’ so she just kept on, referring to choking the Victim,” the complaint states. “Schabusiness said in a lower tone of voice, ‘Ya I liked it,’ and Detective Graf believed her to be referring to when she was choking the Victim.”

She then allegedly went into further detail about Thyrion's death.

“Schabusiness stated she thought it took 3-5 minutes for the Victim to die. Detective Kempf clarified with Schabusiness that when the Victim began to cough up blood she just did keep on choking the Victim because she wanted to see what happens. Schabusiness made comments that she blacked out while choking the Victim but when she woke up that the Victim was already purple, so she kept on going,” authorities added. “Schabusiness stated she enjoyed choking him and made comments to detectives asking if they knew what it was like to love something so much that you kill it.”

She previously pleaded not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. She is being held on $2 million bond.


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