Mercy killing confession: 'I just let it go' - KMSP-TV

Mercy killing confession: 'I just let it go'

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George Sanders George Sanders
SUN CITY, Ariz. -

MCSO is releasing the interrogation tapes in the so-called "mercy killing" of a Sun City woman. 85-year-old George Sanders pleaded guilty to manslaughter charges in his wife's death, and we're hearing from Sanders himself on why he killed her.

The couple had been married for 60 years.

George Sanders told detectives his wife was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis back in 1969, so it was something they had been dealing with for quite a while. He said things got so bad that his wife begged him to kill her.

This video is from November of last year. George Sanders, his head in his hands, just brought in for questioning after MCSO detectives found his 81-year-old wife Virginia, in her wheelchair, with a gunshot wound in her head.

Sanders in video: "I felt sorry for her.. she never complained.. wonderful person.. we loved each other so much."

He said he'd watched her struggle with multiple sclerosis for 40 years. He was her primary caretaker, yet he said his own health was beginning to deteriorate.

Recently things had gotten so bad for her, doctors wanted to admit her to the hospital to treat gangrene on her toes. Sanders said Virginia begged him to just end it.

Sanders in video: "I said I don't think I can do that. ‘Yes you can I don't want to go there they're going to cut off my toes.'"

"So I went and got the gun and she said 'is this going to hurt?' And I said ‘you won't feel anything.' So had the gun up against her head and I had a rolled up towel so the bullet wouldn't go somewhere in the kitchen and so she was saying ‘do it, do it, do it' and I just let it go."

He then called 911.

"911 emergency?"

"Yes my name is Sanders. I just shot my wife."

Officers arrived and found him sitting in a patio chair on the front porch. He was arrested.

Paramedics arrived and found Virginia. She was still breathing. She died two days later at the hospital.

During a search of the house, detectives found a yellow notebook with the words "I want to die tonight." And just below it was what appeared to be an attempt to sign the paper or an attempt at copying that phrase.

Sanders will be sentenced on manslaughter charges later this month.

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