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TAYLOR PARKER TRIAL, DAY 11 | In taped interview, defendant shares her memory of how baby was delivered

by Lori Dunn | September 28, 2022 at 6:04 p.m.
Taylor Parker

NEW BOSTON -- In two videotaped interviews, Taylor Parker claimed Reagan Hancock asked her to take her unborn daughter out of her because she was afraid she was dying after the two women fought in Hancock's home.

"She was laying in a pool of blood. She rolled over and specifically said, 'Take her because I feel like I'm dying,'" Parker said to Texas Ranger Joshua Mason in the taped interview. "She begged me to take her ... She kept saying, 'Get her out of me, get her out of me.'"

"Do you believe that is consistent with the evidence?" First Assistant Bowie County District Attorney Kelley Crisp asked Mason.

"I don't believe it at all," said Mason, the lead investigator in Hancock's killing who testified for about four hours Wednesday.

Mason was driving back from the Mexico border on Oct. 9, 2020, when he was called about the case. He reached the crime scene on Austin Street in New Boston shortly after 4 p.m., he testified.

Parker cried during the interviews with Mason that were conducted on the evening of Oct. 9 at the Idabel, Oklahoma, jail and on the afternoon of Oct. 14 at the Bowie County Sheriff's Office after her extradition.

Prior to the jury watching the interviews, Mason described the conversations with Parker as interesting, confusing "and not believable."

Parker told Mason that at first she did not remember cutting the baby, Braxlynn, out of Hancock.

"I don't believe that. You give me a story and leave out the middle of it," Mason said.

"I had to take her out. That was the only way to get her out," Parker said.

"How did you do that?"

"I had to cut her out," Parker replied.

"Right. Did you show up with the knife?" Mason asked.

Parker paused for several seconds and then said she did not remember bringing a knife.

Parker then told Mason she carried a medical kit in her purse that she used on her dogs when they went hog hunting. She told him the scalpel was part of the kit.

She told him Braxlynn was not breathing when she was born.

"I remember taking the baby out of the sac, and she wasn't breathing. The cord was around her neck, and I told Reagan she wasn't breathing ... I turned her over and was hitting her on her back and a bunch of fluid came out and Reagan said go. I don't want to talk about it anymore," Parker said in the video.

Mason asked Parker where she left the scalpel. Parker replied she did remember exactly but she would have left it near Reagan.

"I laid it down. I am pretty 100% positive," she said.

Mason told Parker he had more information on the scalpel.

"The scalpel was broke off in her neck. It was found in the autopsy. Please explain," Mason said.

Parker asked Mason if he could prove that and he said he did not have to prove it because it was a fact.

Investigator Weston Fannin with New Boston Police Department was also in the interview and told Parker he witnessed Reagan's autopsy and saw the scalpel removed from her neck.

"I laid it on the floor ... I'm going with what I remember," Parker said. "I don't remember stabbing her, and I was the only person there."

"I'm going with you did it," Mason said. "You put that knife in her neck and walked away. We recovered the knife, scalpel, whatever you call it, the blade, in her neck."

Parker is charged with capital murder and could face the death penalty in the killing of Reagan Simmons Hancock of New Boston and the taking of her unborn daughter, Braxlynn, who also died. Parker has pleaded not guilty.

Parker is represented by attorneys Jeff Harrelson of Texarkana and Mac Cobb of Mount Pleasant, Texas. Judge John Tidwell is the presiding judge.

Parker told Mason that Reagan was still alive when she left the house with the baby that morning. He questioned her about putting the umbilical cord down her pants.

"Number one, I was not in my right mind. Number two, I was freaking out," Parker said.

Parker also told Mason in the interviews that Reagan called her the morning of Friday, Oct. 9 because she was worried about her and the headaches and blackouts she had been having. Parker said Reagan invited her to her house that morning to rest.

"I told her I would come over and could lay down for a few hours, and she said we needed to talk," she told Mason.

Parker told Mason she started the morning by going to McDonald's in New Boston for coffee and a hash brown. She then got gas at the EZ Mart store on McCoy Boulevard. She was driving boyfriend Wade Griffin's car because it got better gas mileage, she said to Mason.

At one point, Griffin called her and asked her to return to their house to let the dog out but she never made it due to a blackout, Parker said.

"I was getting a real bad headache, and I pulled over in Old Boston. I was starting to get really bad migraines," she said. "I know for a fact I never made it back to the house ... the next thing I remember I was in a funeral home and church parking lot. I never remember getting to the house or the funeral home church place. They are smack dab right next to each other. I thought it was kind of weird I was sitting in a funeral home parking lot."

Parker told Mason in the interviews that once she got to Hancock's house, Hancock "grabbed her in the driveway."

"She grabbed me in a caring manner, but it was forceful. That's when she scratched me, and it was like I was going in and out and she kept hollering at me in a 'you need to wake the f*** up" way,'" Parker told Mason.

"I told her I needed to get away, that something was wrong and she wouldn't let me," Parker said.

Parker said she and Hancock began shoving each other in the garage and that Hancock closed the garage door.

"I shoved her down in the garage, like pushed her down. I didn't want to be there because I was afraid something bad was going to happen," Parker said.

She told Mason that Hancock hit her head on her car and on the garage floor.

Mason testified Wednesday that Parker's timeline of events was inconsistent and her story did not match evidence found at the scene.

In Parker's account, she put her stuff down in Hancock's living room. She said Hancock was fixing her hair for work and said she had overslept and was running late. She also said Hancock told her that she and her husband, Homer, were not happy and might not stay together.

"You got into a fight, made up, she went and fixed her hair and you murdered her. Is that what happened? There was a 3-year-old girl in that house. This family wants answers," Mason said during the interview.

In the interview, Parker said she told Reagan she needed to go meet Wade Griffin in Idabel. She said she picked up her bag and Hancock grabbed at it and Parker accidentally scratched Hancock and then pushed her into a table.

"I think she hit something because she was bleeding," Parker told Mason. "She had blood on her face."

Parker told Mason that Hancock was the one who brought the knife from the kitchen

"She told me to stop hitting her and then turned around and cut me twice or three times in the hand," she said.

Mason questioned the lack of cuts or abrasions on Parker.

In the beginning of the police interview, Mason asked Parker if she had ever been diagnosed with a mental illness. Parker replied she had been diagnosed with depression and that she had seen a psychiatrist from 2017 to 2019.

"I was having depression ... I had suicidal thoughts ... I was going through a divorce," she said.

Parker told him she had been having blackout episodes, which may be related to a stroke she had in 2015.

Crisp pointed out that Parker had never been diagnosed with a stroke and had seen a counselor but not a psychiatrist. Mason testified that no proof of mental illness was ever found.

He also testified that Parker denied the bomb threat made to the Mount Pleasant Hospital and fabricated phone numbers from apps.

"You can admit to cutting a woman with a scalpel and taking a baby but not a bomb threat?" Mason asked. "You had a scalpel in your purse. No normal person walks around with a scalpel in their purse. Your intent was wanting a baby, right or wrong."

In the interview, Mason referenced Parker's connection to the Hancock family.

"You took her family pictures. You took her 3-year-old's photos. She trusted you."

Mason testified that he did not have contact with Parker after the interview on Oct. 14

After Crisp passed Mason as a witness, Harrelson questioned Mason about the first time he had contact with Parker and the plans to bring her back to Bowie County after she waived extradition. He also asked about Parker's giving a DNA sample without a warrant, and Mason said that was correct.

Testimony continues today at the Bowie County Courthouse.

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