SPOKANE, Wash.--The suspect in a high profile Spokane murder case was getting ready for his trial in April on Wednesday.
Gary Stoddard is accused of handcuffing and murdering 20-year-old Heather Cassel. His nephew, Jonathan Ritchey, was implicated in the crime as well. Ritchey has since reached a plea deal.
Stoddard confessed to the murder but told KREM 2 News he did not mean his confession. Detectives believe otherwise. Documents showed Stoddard’s DNA was found on a hat near Cassel’s body. Detectives said that is not the only card they are ready to play at Stoddard’s trial.
“I have never made a jail house confession to either inmates or staff. I don't talk to these people,” said Stoddard.
Detectives described Stoddard as a serial offender in the past. Multiple women have come forward and claimed to be his targets. The case was even featured on the Dr. Phil show. Stoddard calls that ridiculous.
WATCH: Dr. Phil's coverage of Gary Stoddard
“That whole unbelievable notion that the detective put out there about being a serial killer, think about that. That's not even funny. I would expect that from a half-wit like Dr. Phil, but a police detective? It's not right,” said Stoddard.
Stoddard said he believes the high profile nature of his case will make it extremely difficult to get a fair trial.
“You could amputate an arm before I'd give him a chance. I don't even like the guy and no one else does either,” Stoddard said of Dr. Phil.
Stoddard said he knows who the real killer likely is but said he did not want to go into that during KREM 2 News’ interview. He said he is confident he can prove his innocence if police give him a chance.
“I will take a stipulated polygraph. Polygraph me on these things,” said Stoddard.
Stoddard said he took a polygraph on his own, independent from a police issued test, and said he passed when asked if he killed Heather Cassel.