Accused says ex-wife killed young woman

August 24, 2003 11:00 pm

By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

The Del Norte County man accused of killing a hitchhiker nine years ago said he will prove in court that someone else committed the crime.

Robert Alan Wigley appeared before Judge Robert Weir yesterday with a motion to postpone his Sept. 8 trial date. A decision on that motion was held over until next week.

During his appearance, the defendant accused his ex-wife of committing the crime.

At his preliminary hearing last year, Wigley openly acknowledged he had firsthand knowledge of what happened to Randall, but said he was not responsible for her death.

Wigley is charged with the 1994 murder of Camillia "Forest" Randall, of Longview, Wash., as she hitchhiked through town while travelling from Oregon to the Bay Area. Her body was discovered dumped in Stout Grove.

The defendant was later tied to Randall when his DNA was matched with crime scene evidence.

Wigley, who is currently in custody at Del Norte County jail, requested the postponement yesterday because, he said, his expert witnesses and jailers have been uncooperative in preparing his case and he needs more time to prepare for trial.

District Attorney Mike Riese argued the defendant, who is representing himself after firing his attorneys, has already had three continuances since his arrest in 2001. Riese said Wigley himself created the defense problems he now faces.

Weir said he will hear Wigley's arguments during a hearing scheduled for Wednesday, but when the defendant asked the court for advice yesterday, Weir did not seem inclined to grant the motion.

"You've chosen to represent yourself, so I can't tell you what to do," said Weir. "You have to decide what you want to do."