Suspect in 5 Ohio murders talks to reporter during SWAT situation, arrest (transcript)
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Before North Royalton police took George Brinkman into custody early Tuesday morning following an overnight standoff situation with SWAT teams and local law enforcement officials, he spoke to Cleveland 19's Lacey Crisp on Facebook.
During a press conference, North Royalton Police Det. Dave Loeding said Brinkman is connected to five murders.
Read more: Who is George Brinkman?
On Sunday, Suzanne Taylor and her two daughters, Taylor and Kylie, were found murdered inside of a North Royalton home. On Monday afternoon, Rogell Eugene John II and his wife Roberta Ray John were found murdered in their Lake Township home.
The following conversation between Brinkman and Crisp has been edited for clarity and to omit personal information about the reporter. Cleveland 19 News notified the police about the conversation after officials said Brinkman was a suspect hours into the conversation. Officers encouraged Cleveland 19 News to continue talking to Brinkman on Facebook.
When the conversation began, Brinkman was not a known suspect. Crisp reached out to Brinkman on Facebook because she noticed he was a Facebook friend of the North Royalton vicitms and wanted to know more about the three women found murdered.
The following conversation took place between 10 p.m. until about 3 a.m. Tuesday. Police broke into the Brunswick home on Valley Forge Drive around 5:30 a.m. and used a Taser to take him into custody.
George Brinkman: I'm sorry but do I know you? You sent me a friends request, may I ask why?
Lacey Crisp: I'm a reporter for Cleveland 19. I'm so sorry for your loss.
Brinkman: I am too. I've known Sue since grade school and was there when Taylor was born. Such a tough situation. I'm still waiting for the detective to contact me ... they were such awesome people.
Crisp: Would you be willing to talk to me on-camera? Just about how you will remember them? Fun memories, that kind of thing? So we get a better idea who they were.
Brinkman: I don't know ... I'm having a hard time keeping it together ... I lost my mom a couple years ago, then my brother ... now them.
Crisp: I understand. I promise I will make it as easy on you as possible, and we edit everything. I just want people to know who they were, not just how they died.
Brinkman: Let me think about it ... I can let you know after I get off work. I gave Taylor the nickname "Timmy" and she gave me "Dino Man" from Jurassic Park. "Dino Man" always was there to save her ... just not this time ...
Crisp: Aw, that's the kind of thing I'd love to have you share. My story is for 4 p.m. tonight.
Brinkman: I wont even be back in the area until around 6 ... 6:30 [p.m.] ...I'm sorry. How did you get my name if i may ask?
Crisp: I just saw you are friends with them on Facebook. Would it be possible to talk to you on the phone for a few minutes?
Brinkman: Send me your number and I'll call as soon as I get a chance to stop ... should be within an hour or two ... that's the best I can do ...
Crisp: That works for me, thank you! [number omitted]
Brinkman: Thank you ... I'll call as soon as i can.
Crisp: Sorry to bother you again, just checking in to see if you have a couple minutes to talk? Thanks! I'm really sorry to bother, anything anecdotally you can tell me about sue? Likes, dislikes, was she funny, serious? Thanks again.
Brinkman: Hello Lacey. Sorry i wasn't able to call. Still interested in talking face-to-face?
Crisp: Yes! We are across the street from the house. Can you meet us here? My cell is [omitted].
Brinkman never responded and did not show up for an interview.
This next segment took place at about 9:50 p.m. Monday. Crisp was home and was tipped off about police being in Brunswick surrounding a suspect's house, but did not know Brinkman was involved yet.
Brinkman: 3351 Valley Forge Dr. Brunswick, Ohio 44212 ... hostage situation ... please come. cops came for me ... I'm barricaded ... no lies.
Crisp: Get out of the house. Hands up.
Brinkman: No ...
Crisp: Who is in there with you?
Brinkman: No one ... I had her leave. This is going to end up with me dead ... sorry.
Crisp: No, that doesn't need to happen! You need to live. Can you tell me what happened?
Brinkman: I'm being blamed for Sue and her daughter's death. I had a broken right hand since Friday. How could I control three adults with a broken hand?
This is when Crisp called police to tell them she had been and is still communicating with their suspect. Police asked Crisp to continue talking to Brinkman. Officials asked her to encourage him to come out of the Brunswick home. Crisp sent screen shots of the conversation to officers.
Crisp: Just tell the police that! You will be OK. How did you break your hand? I'm so sorry you are going through this.
Brinkman: I punched a wall because of work issues Friday.
Crisp: Are the police still outside?
Brinkman: Yeah ... getting ready to breech ... good luck.
Crisp: What does that mean? Hey, are you OK? Hey. I'm worried about you. George? Please tell me what's going on. I want to get your side out.
Brinkman: Still talking ... for now.
Crisp: Please continue to talk to them. Please let me know if I can do anything.
Brinkman: Just let everyone know that I would never hurt Sue or the kids ... I loved them too much.
Crisp: You can tell people that yourself. Can you FaceTime me? George, please keep talking to me. I want to make sure you are OK. Hey, what can I do to help?
Brinkman: You're a good person ... thank you ... take care.
Crisp: Thank you, and you are a good person too.
Crisp: No -- I'm here for you. Please don't say goodbye. Let me help.
Brinkman: I'm sorry ... too late.
Crisp: It's never too late. What can I do? Please tell me how I can I help? What can I tell people? Hey, are you still there? Who was with you? Hey, are you OK? George? Please talk to me.
Brinkman: [Expletive] that. You were working with police trying to trap me and I thought you were legitimate. [Expletive] .... just read the report.
Crisp: What report?
Brinkman: All of them.
Crisp: You need to be more specific.
Brinkman: That you were working in concert with the police. I reached out to you because I thought you could help. Instead you stabbed me in the back ... thanks for that. I regret trusting you ... my mistake.
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