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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

Facing the Music

Aired September 3, 2003 - 14:36   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

DARYN KAGAN, ANCHOR: We are keeping an eye on Troy, New York as well, that's where the sentencing hearing has started for Christine Wilhelm. That's her husband Kenneth Wilhelm, he's about to make a Victim's Impact Statement. Let's listen in.
KENNETH WILHELM, BOY'S FATHER: Song America dies, my son Peter said to me three days before Christmas this year at my parents' house. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) I tell him exactly that (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Son America Dies a 6-year-old boy comes up with a statement like that, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) it sort of makes me wonder.

(UNINTELLIGIBLE) Daddy doesn't love you. If you don't behave, daddy is going to put you in the Army and you're going to die. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Your father is not the best but he tries. And we call Peter after his mother stated bad things about daddy and daddy doesn't says bad things about mommy. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and turn our house into a (UNINTELLIGIBLE) trying to divorce me and trying to turn the children against me.

(UNINTELLIGIBLE) This is a woman who will feel any action and shows deceptiveness and manipulations to get what she wants. And that was a document written by her and signed by her mother as a witness stating whether or not she'll be her legal guardian or I'll be killed. And that she was of sound mind and body at the time of this writing two months prior to the time of the murder.

She also (UNINTELLIGIBLE) made contact through Brian through custody of our two children and getting a divorce. A request to take proceeds of a (UNINTELLIGIBLE) of the time of our move, she request me to be used as payment for a credit card balance which was solely in her name and sole her responsibility. Based on the fact that she said she felt bad about not working and (UNINTELLIGIBLE) she said it would make her feel better. So a $2000 payment was paid by me on her account about six days before she committed her crimes.

These are not the actions of a man who wants to divorce his wife, nor her (UNINTELLIGIBLE) as the defense claims. But that of a woman who wanted to reduce her debts because she was planning on divorcing me at sometime in the near future.

She had made statements that what she did was out of mercy for the children. What she did was definitely not merciful to any of (UNINTELLIGIBLE) It was an act of someone in a rage of (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Not twice but three times, went out to the (UNINTELLIGIBLE) by her own admission (UNINTELLIGIBLE) medical attention (UNINTELLIGIBLE) for each child. She had stated to me the week after the crimes, why did mommy drown me twice and Luke only once? (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and I could hear the screaming and crying in the bathroom. I went to the bathroom and Luke was in the bathtub. and I told mommy that she was going to hurt Luke. She yelled at me to get out. I told her that she was lying and she was doing it on purpose. She said no I'm not and to get out. She said I want you to march upstairs, get into bed and then get to sleep. And then a police officer woke up.

He woke up telling me that his brother was dead, and he probably out of fear, he wanted to know where his mother was. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) This was a happy, happy boy who just turned 4 years old (UNINTELLIGIBLE) This was a boy who full of life, energy and love and a big heart for many people whom he had met only a few times. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Dad I was afraid about you. (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

So what she did (UNINTELLIGIBLE) she killed, hurt and (UNINTELLIGIBLE) in 2001 she called our home from (UNINTELLIGIBLE) County Jail. She stated some (UNINTELLIGIBLE) that Peter (UNINTELLIGIBLE) She knew what contact she was having with her mother. (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

And then I filed for divorce before she went elsewhere. A month later, I filed for divorce as she had found from the phone conversation (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

Or what he looks like so that one day she can hopefully reconcile her relationship with him. (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

I don't think of myself as a victim. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) After going through this past year of the trial, I have indeed become a victim. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) following the crimes for what she did. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) would be unsupervised with Peter. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) I was falsely accused of sexually molesting my child (UNINTELLIGIBLE) after she agreed with the possibility I would have done such a thing.

(UNINTELLIGIBLE) an outfit for him to get buried in. And to top it off, I had the Public Defender's Office (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and certain members of his family (UNINTELLIGIBLE) misrepresentations, slandering me in a public courtroom, which was made into libelous statements by the local news media. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) they cannot be removed.

And we'll probably know the truth about why she did what she did but we do know that there (UNINTELLIGIBLE) was a little boy who was (UNINTELLIGIBLE) no such thing as kindergarten. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) a little boy who felt loved and wanted (UNINTELLIGIBLE) accomplishment (UNINTELLIGIBLE) what happened in that horrific night in the days, weeks and months, which followed.

She, Christine refused to accepted responsibility for her actions throughout the trial. I think Peter and myself (UNINTELLIGIBLE) reopening up old wounds and denying everything in the process.

KAGAN: When you listen to that statement you can't help but have your heartbreak. That was Kenneth Wilhelm; his wife Christina Wilhelm back in 2002 last year, she's been convicted of trying to drown their two sons. She succeeded with one of them; she drowned her 4-year-old Luke. Five-year-old Peter managed to escape. And that was the son he was talking about who is living with Ken right now along with his father right.

Christina Wilhelm, having been convicted of that crime could face life in prison. Her Public Defender Krista Riza (ph), she believes that if Christina Wilhelm is sent to prison that she will not get the psychiatric help that she believes that she needs. That's her public defender there -- actually, that's the prosecutor. You see Christina on the right side of the screen. She's the one wearing the eye patch.

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