The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, March 22, 1993, Image 5

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Monday, March 22,1993 The Battalion Page 5 Minister faces attempted murder trial Wife never to recover from vegetative state after near strangling six years ago THE ASSOCIATED PRESS DALLAS — The attack on a prominent minister's wife was a sensational tale of anonymous racist threats, attempted murder, bungled suicide, adultery and an unlikely suspect: the minister himself. Now, six years later, the mys tery may be solved starting Mon day, when a trial gets under way in San Antonio to decide if, in fact, the Rev. Walker Railey savagely choked Peggy Railey that warm spring night. Railey, 45, insists he did not. Peggy Railey survived the as sault, but only barely. At 43 she remains in a vegetative state from which she will never recover. In 1987, the Rev. Walker Railey, dynamic and socially conscious, was the high-profile minister of the 6,000-member First United Methodist Church. By all accounts, Peggy Railey was a devoted wife and loving mother in a solid and serene mar- en came the letters. The first called Railey "a nigger lover.” The last of the unsigned, type written letters was slipped under a church door on Easter Sunday. Railey had preached that day wearing a bulletproof vest. "On Easter Christ rose from the dead,” it said. "And on this day you are going down.” Two nights later, Railey called home from his car phone. "Hi, Babe,” he said into an an swering machine. "I'm calling you from my mobile phone. Peg, it's about, oh, I don't know, I don't have a watch. It's somewhere be tween 10:30 and 10:45. ...” There was no response. "My concern is that you're safe," he con tinued. At that mo ment, his wife lay uncon scious. She had been choked with a cord. A phone computer would later pinpoint Railey's call to 12:03 a.m. on April 22,1987. His wife near death, Railey in terrupted his hospital room vigil only to speak to authorities. He told them he had been do ing library research the night of the attack at Southern Methodist University. Returning home about 12:40 a.m., he said, he drove into the garage where he found his wife writhing in convulsions. Their son, Ryan, 5, and daugh ter, Megan, 2, were safe inside the house. He telephoned police and a friend. Soon after, the FBI concluded the threatening letters were com posed on a typewriter at Railey's church. On May 1, as police prepared to question Railey about discrep ancies in his story, he took an overdose of tranquilizers. He wrote in a note, "There is a demon inside my soul. It has always been there. ... My demon has fi nally gotten the upper hand.” Railey wouldn't talk to investiga tors. He entered a psychiatric hos pital. Then The Dallas Morning News reported about a potential witness in the case, Lucy Papillon. Phone records showed Railey phoned the Dallas psychologist twice the night of Mrs. Railey's at tack. On July 29, Railey went before a grand jury and invoked his right against self-incrimination 43 times. "He has made it absolutely clear to the press and to the police that he didn't do it,” said Doug Mulder, his attorney. But Papillon, 46, the daughter of a former Methodist bishop, told grand jurors that she and Railey were lovers for a year and he had visited her the night of Mrs. Rai ley's attack. Days after her testimony, Rai ley gave up his church credentials and soon after, with no charges filed against him, left with Papil lon for San Francisco. In Dallas, Mrs. Railey's mother, Billie Jo Nicolai, filed a civil law suit accusing her son-in-law of trying to kill her daughter. Exactly one year after the at tack, a judge ruled that Railey "in tentionally, knowingly, malicious ly and brutally attempted to stran gle his wife.” When he ordered Railey to pay $16.5 million in damages, the cler gyman sent word he was broke. The next year, Railey gave up custody of his children and tried in vain to divorce Peggy, who lives in a nursing home under her parents' care. He was indicted last year and on Aug. 25, police converged on Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Los Angeles, where Railey worked as a $70,000-a-year ad ministrator. He was returned to Texas and freed on $25,000 bond. Muzzled by a gag order, Prose cutor Cecil Emerson says only that he hopes to begin presenting his case on Wednesday. Railey's attorney did not return telephone calls. "He has made it absolutely clear to the press and to the police that he didn't do it." -Doug Mulder, attorney The Texas A<5tM University Student Publications Board is accepting applications for Editor, Aggieland 1994 The editor of the 1994 Aggieland yearbook will serve from August 1993 through August 1994. Qualifications for the position are: Be a Texas A&.M student with a minimum 2.0 overall and major GPR at the time of appointment and during the term of office; Have at least one year experience in a responsible position on the Aggieland or comparable college yearbook. Have completed or be registered in JOUR 210 (Graphics) or equivalent. Application forms should be picked up and returned to the Student Publications Manager's office, room 230 Reed McDonald Building. Deadline for submitting application: 5 p.m. Wednesday, March31, 1993. Applicants will be inter- viewed during the Student Publications Board Meeting be ginning at 3 p.m. Monday, April 5, 1993, in room 327 Reed McDonald. WELCOME BACK L— ' ' : Prices up after harsh winter slims cattle THE ASSOCIATED PRESS LUBBOCK — A harsh winter nationwide has resulted in slimmer cattle this year, but trading numbers and prices are starting to hit record highs as meatpackers struggle to meet meat demands. The 43,000 tagged heifers and steers penned inside Lubbock Feedyard Inc. now are getting fatter and ready for slaughter. And feedlot owner Terry Crofoot hinted that he made "extremely large" sales last Mon day. The Texas Cattle Feeders Association, which monitors eastern New Mexico and western Oklahoma as well as Texas, was more specific: A record 64,883 cattle sold in the TCFA area last Monday. "We just have the cattle available,” said Jim Gill, market director for the Amarillo-based or ganization. "The cattle in Kansas have really been hurt by the weather. Their trade hasn't completely quit up there, but a lot of cattle sold north of Amarillo are going to Kansas and supplementing the cattle kill.” Group attempts to reverse economic decline THE ASSOCIATED PRESS'—... :..rU nl—-— FREEPORT — ^A group trying to revitalize the declining local economy is turning the down town area into a once-a-month marketplace. The Freeport Old River Market Days, which is planned for the second Saturday of each month beginning May 8, is being pro moted as way for local residents to sell their goods. "They can bring chickens or vegetables they grew in their backyards, cars, or anything they would sell in a garage sale,” said Sandra Barnett, executive director of thje FreepoHr League, a non profit organization formed to pro- mote the cf'ity. Similar markets have been suc cessful in several cities in Texas. Canton's "First Monday” market has become well-known, drawing sellers, and buyers, from several states for the entire weekend be fore the first M-onday of each month. Bay City, in Mathgorda Coun ty, also has a market on the court house square. Held the third Sat urday of each month, it had only a few participants when it opened several years ago. Today, there are more than 150 booths. Perot Continued from Page 1 by polling experts who said the questions were leading and the results guaranteed to be unreliable. For example, Perot asked, "Should laws be passed to eliminate all possibilities of special interests giving huge sums of money to candi dates?” Reams of polling data suggest the public would answer "Yes” to that and most of the questions posed by Perot in the first of what he promises will be a series similar programs. Since winning an historic 19 percent of the vote last year, Perot has promised to build an unrivaled grassroots political organization to pressure Washington and the states to enact fiscal and political reforms. He has traveled the country and aired tele vision ads soliciting members for a $15 annual fee. Looking for more recruits, Perot's people will tabulate the ballots by congressional dis trict and add the names to a mailing list that already rivals those of the major political par ties. Perot was so concerned reaction to the pro gram be favorable that he taped two versions and aired the one given the best review at a Texas screening. He spent more than $700,000 of his own money for the network time and ballot distribution, aides said. The broadcast comes at a time when Perot is enjoying high favorability ratings with the public. For example, 59 percent of those sur veyed last week in a Time magazine-CNN poll viewed Perot favorably and 56 percent thought forming United We Stand America t; was a good idea. Although Perot says he would "rather have major surgery without anesthesia” than run for office again, 65 per cent of the 800 adults polled said they expect ed another Perot candidacy. Another recent survey, however, suggested that many Americans applaud Perot's agenda but wouldn't want him as president. This survey of 800 adults, taken March 9-11 by EDK Associates of New York, found just 18 percent wished Perot were president — rough ly equal to his support in last year's election. "They don't see him as someone who should be in control, but they see him raising their issues and as someone with the guts to say things other politicians are unwilling to say,” said EDK President Ethel Klein. "They are happy to have this guy out there making sure the people in power behave well." AGGIES! SUPER SPRING SAVINGS ON DOUBLE PRINTS AS LOW AS Good on developing and printing 2 sets of standard size 3“ prints or a single set of 4"prints. From 110, disc, 126 or 35mm color print film C-41 process only. 12exp. $2.69 15 disc $3.39 24 exp. $3.99 36 exp. $5.99 The Texas A&M University Student Publications Board is accepting applications for Editor, The Battalion Fall 1993 The fall '93 editor will serve from August 16, 1993, through December 10, 1993. Qualifications for editor of The Battalion are: Be a Texas A&M scudent with a minimum 2.0 overall and major GPR at the time of appointment and during the term of office; Have at least one year experience in a responsible editorial position on The battalion or comparable student newspaper, OR Have at least one year editorial experience on a commercial newspaper, OR Have completed at least 12 hours journalism, including JOUR 203 and 303 (Media Writing I and II), JOUR 301 (Mass Comm Law) and JOUR 304 (Editing for the Mass Media), or equivalent. Application forms should be picked up and returned to the Student Publications Manager's office, room 230 Reed McDonald Building. Deadline for submitting application: 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 31, 1993. Applicants will be inter viewed during the Student Publications Board Meeting be ginning at 3 p.m. Friday, April 2, 1993, in room 327 Reed McDonald. ^ Wanted: Enthusiastic, motivated leaders to serve the Class of’93 until 1998. To act as liaisons between the Class of’93, The Association of Former Students, and the University. If you are interested in running, you must attend the informational meeting to be held Tuesday, M.arcR 23 at 4:30 p.m. in the Clayton W. Williams Alumni Center : ' '-yj! '• ; ■ t For more information, contact Wynn Rosser ’90 at 845-7514