An Oklahoma man bypassed a criminal trial and pleaded guilty this week to the death of his step-father, who he strangled with his own underwear using an "atomic wedgie."
In December 2013, Denver Lee St. Clair, 58, apparently called Brad Lee Davis, 34, and his mother "worthless," instigating a fight, the Oklahoman reported; his mom was in the hospital at the time. The two battled it out in the latter's trailer.
His account of what exactly happened has differed a bit, but the former Marine told the judge he didn't mean to cause his death.
"I never had any intention of killing that man. There's no way I ever thought that could have happened," he said, adding that the atomic wedgie was employed. "In the heat of passion while defending myself in a fight that got out of hand and went too far… It's like a bad dream."
In the first version, the victim was struck violently in the face and head, the Shawnee News Star reported. Eventually, he fell unconscious and Brad pulled the underwear over his head; the elastic band tore and then was wrapped around the front of the deceased's neck. He died of asphyxiation.
This was the story Davis told investigators the day after the altercation that caused Denver's death. But 10 days after that, he changed his tune, claiming he punched him out afterward. On Wednesday in court, he admitted to lying in his initial story.
"I knew that that wedgie was out of line," he said.
Either way, the point of the violent act was to embarrass his step-father, who he claimed was a bully; he wanted St. Clair to be humiliated when he woke up. And he even snapped a cell phone photo to ensure it. According to the Star, he allegedly took photos before the atomic wedgie and after, and testimony in court suggested that perhaps the crime scene had been changed.
The official charge, to which he's pleaded guilty, is first-degree manslaughter with the condition heat of passion. He will be sentenced in July.
[Photo Courtesy YouTube Screngrab]