LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - An accused killer is back in Lubbock following more than three years of his alleged crime.
Authorities transported Mickey Patterson from Oregon to Lubbock where he arrived Sunday afternoon. Patterson is accused of killing Peggy Merimon and Kay Harrelson in August of 2006 when the two women went missing from the Lubbock State School where they worked. Three years after the disappearance of Harrelson and Merimon, police charged Patterson with two counts of 1st degree murder.
As Patterson walked into the Lubbock County Jail he said he was innocent, but he had these few words for the victim's families, "I'm sorry for them." Merimon's husband Geral is confident Patterson is responsible for his wife's death. "The very next morning when I heard his name, I knew it was him," he said.
For Geral, the past three years have been painful ones, searching for his missing wife. "We have searched and searched for many months. A little over two years we searched, and I went searching again about three weeks ago. I've continued. I haven't stopped searching," said Geral.
He's happy Patterson is now in custody, but says it won't bring closure unless he finds his wife's body. He believes Patterson holds the key to that mystery. "That's always been our greatest hope is that he'll tell us where she's at. I mean, just knowing that he's been arrested, and I'm hoping that he has a conscience, and that he'll tell us where she is and we can bring her home. That's the most important thing to me," said Geral Merimon.
Harrelson's body was found 11 days after the two women disappeared, but after several searches Merimon is still missing. The fact that there is no body will likely come up in trial. It's not common, but it is possible to convict without a body. It happened in Lubbock in the 90's. A jury found Leisha Hamilton guilty of murdering the man she lived with, Roger Scott Dunn. Police could not find Dunn's body, but prosecutors found enough circumstantial evidence to get a conviction.
The District Attorney's office says while not having a body in the Merimon case presents a challenge, it does not mean they cannot convict Patterson in the murder.
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