Man recants testimony in Mo. editor's death

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - A man whose testimony helped convict a friend in the 2001 slaying of a Columbia sports editor is now saying that he alone committed the crime.

Chuck Erickson says in court statements that he was soley responsible for the death of Kent Heitholt, sports editor of Columbia Daily Tribune when he was killed on Nov. 1, 2001.

Erickson had testified in 2005 that co-defendant Ryan Ferguson helped him rob, beat and strangle Heitholt in the Tribune's parking lot.

Erickson is now saying that he is the only one who killed Heitholt.

Ferguson was convicted of second-degree murder and is serving a 40-year sentence. He has appealed his conviction and Erickson's statements were included in a motion filed by Ferguson's attorneys last Friday in the Western District Court of Appeals.

Erickson pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and is serving a 25-year sentence.

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