Timothy McEnany Talks About the Katherine Bishop Murder Investigation (Pt 3)

In this segment, Timothy McEnany continues to recount the events leading up to his arrest as a suspect in the Katherine Bishop murder investigation. The following is the account in his own words (part three). This is a continuation of the initial account, which can be found here.

Timothy McEnany

Timothy McEnany

Next, the two original troopers returned to the room, and told me that McIlhenny told them I was lying. I told them that was not true, and I wanted to go home. They responded by telling me I wasn’t going anywhere. They said that I knew something, and it would be better for me if I would just tell them what I knew. I didn’t know anything, and told them so. Freehling became increasingly agitated, and began getting louder and banging on the desk.

At this point, Freehling put forth a scenario in which he claimed my cousin committed the crime, while I waited outside, and that I didn’t know that Mrs. Bishop was dead until the troopers told me.

I told them that was absolutely untrue. Freehling said it might not be exactly how it happened, but that it was pretty close to the truth. I told him he was wrong. He then slammed his hand down again, causing the pen to go flying off the desk, yelling for me to tell him what happened.

I told him that I wanted to make a formal statement, still thinking that I could make the formal statement they used as a ruse to get me to come to the station in the first place. I also told them I wanted to see my wife and children. I know that I wasn’t thinking clearly by this point in time, because things had become so surreal. I think that in my mind, I thought that if my wife and children came, I could give my formal statement and go home with them.

I’m sure that doesn’t seem rational now, but this whole course of events had, by this time, become emotionally draining and dreamlike… no… nightmarish. I felt like everything was moving in slow motion.

Freehling left the room, and I was left with McIlhenny. There was no conversation between us. I was very upset, and said aloud that if I hadn’t gone drinking, then I wouldn’t be in this predicament. You see, drinking had caused me problems in the past, especially with my marriage, and in my mind, I felt that if I had just gone home that night, my wife could have told them I was there with her all night, and this would all be over.

Freehling came back to the room with a piece of paper for me to sign, saying that I waived my right to an attorney.I had previously signed at least one such document earlier in the day, but he again claimed this was just a formality. The thought hadn’t occurred to me earlier in the day that I would even need an attorney, since I had nothing to do with the crime, and even when things started to become bizarre, I didn’t think to ask for an attorney. But now they had accused me of something to do with the crime, and so I refused to sign their piece of paper, and told them I wanted an attorney.

There is no better way to describe Freehling’s demeanor at this time, beside “pissed”.

I was told it would be in my best interest to sign the paper, and tell them what happened. I again refused, and told them I wanted an attorney. They then claimed that if I would sign the paper and talk to them, they would bring my wife and children down to the station to see me. Once again, I told them I didn’t have anything to say, and wanted an attorney present.

[Editor’s note: Why did the police insist on trying to get Timothy McEnany to relinquish his right to an attorney? What was their agenda? I’ve spoken to seven police investigators from other states, and three from Pennsylvania, and all of them agreed that when a detainee refuses to reliquish their rights, and requests an attorney, standard protocol is to comply. In this case, the State Troopers were clearly interfering with Mr. McEnany’s constitutional rights.]

At this point, I kept my mouth shut, and refused to say anything else. The troopers continued making comments. Things like, “You’re throwing your life away…” and “We just wanted to help you…” The suggested that I shouldn’t have to pay for the crime my cousin committed. [Editor: If that was the case, why wasn’t his cousin detained? Maybe because there was no evidence, even circumstantial, linking either man to the crime!]

They said that I should think about my wife and kids, and shouldn’t spend the rest of my life in prison for something I didn’t do. But as difficult as it was not to respond to these comments, I just shut down, and remained silent.

Eventually I was told an attorney was on the phone for me. I was taken to a room filled with brown bags, and was directed to the phone. The public defender was on the other end of the line. I believe his name was Scott Evans. He told me not to speak to the police, and that a lawyer was being sent to meet with me. I hung up, and left the room.

Troopers were standing outside the room, and when I exited, they asked me what he said. I told them he said not to talk to them. I was taken back to the interrogation room. This time, the door was left open, and troopers came in and out. They continued to make comments and ask if I would talk to them. I told them I would not, and they eventually began to ignore me altogether.

Shortly thereafter, I heard my wife’s voice, and someone talking to her. There was no one in the room with me at this time, so I stepped outside the room, and a trooper sitting at a desk close-by told me to go back into the interrogation room. I spoke loudly to my wife, whom I could not see, but could still hear, and said, “Do not talk to them.” The trooper then physically shoved me back into the interrogation room, and closed the door behind him. I told him I wanted to speak with my wife, and he didn’t answer me. He left, closing the door again, behind him.

Later, the door again opened, and one of the troopers introduced me to Mr. Lydon, who told me he was an attorney with the Public Defender’s office. I didn’t trust anyone at this time, and asked him to show me some ID. Mr. Lydon produced his license and business card, and then asked me what was going on. I told him the troopers were accusing me of a crime I knew nothing about. I also told him my wife was there, and I wanted to see her and tell her she should not be speaking to the police. He said he would see what he could do, and left the room.

When he left, a trooper came into the room with me. We didn’t speak. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Lydon came back into the room with my wife. My wife asked me what was going on, and I told her I didn’t understand why, but the police were accusing me of something I had nothing to do with.

I told her not to speak to the troopers, and asked how she got there. She told me the troopers picked her up and drove her there. I told her to call my parents and ask them to come pick her up. At this point a trooper came into the room and made my wife leave.

Lydon and I were then left alone in the room, and he asked me what I wanted to do. I didn’t understand what he meant, and so he asked if I wanted to talk to the troopers. I told him that I had nothing more to say to them, because I knew nothing about the crime, and that Mr. Evans told me not to speak with them. Mr. Lydon then left the room, and returned with a couple troopers and the District Attorney. I was presented with the waiver form to sign again, and they claimed that if I would talk to them, they would do what they could to help me. Again, I told them I had nothing to say.

I was escorted out of the interrogation room, where my hands and feet were chained to a metal ring embedded in the floor. I asked what was going on, and was told that I was being charged with the murder of Mrs. Bishop.

Even after everything else that happened, I was in shock. I remember wishing I would just wake up from this surreal nightmare.

As much as the earlier part of the say seemed like a surreal blur, things just became more and more surreal at that point. I recall being taken to the District Magistrate’s office, where I was charged with criminal homicide, burglary, and conspiracy to commit a robbery. I was committed to Dauphin County Prison without bail.

That was over twenty-one years ago, and I have yet to wake up from this nightmare.

Again, I am so grateful and humbled that you have been gracious enough to turn your head, and not only look my way, but help me in my time of need, when it feels like the world has aligned against me, Archbishop Salvato. Please accept my most heartfelt thanks.

— Timothy McEnany
CP 0502
1600 Walters Mill Road
Somerset, PA 15510

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About Fr. Francis-Maria Salvato, OFM

Fr. Francis-Maria Salvato is a Franciscan priest and retired archbishop of the North American Old Catholic Communion. A former canon lawyer, he has dedicated his spare time to the research and furtherance of the efforts to free those unjustly convicted for crimes they did not commit.
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