Meet the man who encouraged a murderer to confess after 25 years
Shingletown's Tony Trapasso played a crucial role in bringing confessed murderer Brian Hawkins to justice.
Trapasso originally asked that KRCR not identify him when he drove Hawkins to the station hours before taking him to law enforcement, and News Director Jennifer Scarborough agreed. Days later, after he was videotaped giving a statement at the Shasta County Courthouse without his consent, he decided to share the full story of how this all happened with us.
Brian Hawkins grew up down the street from Trapasso in Shingletown.
"He went to school with probably our oldest daughter and every now and then he pops up," Trapasso said. "I think the reason he comes here a lot of the times is because he feels it's safe. We don't judge."
Last week, Hawkins went to the Trapasso's home and shared a shocking story of a murder he was a part of in 1993.
"He says, 'you know, I've done something terrible' and, you know, it was just eating at him," Trapasso said
He told Trapasso and his wife about the murder of Frank McAlister.
"Kinda both my wife and I were like "wow" we didn't expect this in a million years."
Before going to the police, he wanted to ask the community for forgiveness while he still had the freedom to do so.
"He was saying that he wanted to get his story out there and I was like 'what do you mean' and he said he wanted to get on record or recorded and I said' well, I think I know someone who can arrange that' and that's when I got ahold of Courtney Kreider and told her what was going on and 'Is there some way he can come in and sit down and you record his statement?', Trapasso recounted.
Courtney is Trapasso's granddaughter. She and Executive News Director Jennifer Scarborough sat down with Hawkins and heard his story.
"He wanted to be sure he said his peace and it got out there," Trapasso said.
While Jennifer Scarborough was calling law enforcement to tell them what was happening, Trapasso drove Hawkins to the Sheriff's Office. They were informed it was an RPD case so they drove to the police department.
He says Hawkins was cooperative and ready to answer their questions.