The authorities received a phone call one night in February 1987 and rushed to the Wyers residence in Adrian, West Virginia. Inside, they found Wayne Wyers barely holding on to life. After Wayne died, the police turned to the family for answers and learned of a shocking plan to kill him. Investigation Discovery’s ‘People Magazine Investigates: Mother’s Order’ delves into the circumstances that led to Wayne’s death and what happened in the aftermath. So, let’s find out more about this case then, shall we?
How Did Wayne Wyers Die?
Wayne Wyers grew up in Ritchie County, West Virginia, and was one of five children. The family lived out in the country, and Wayne was quite protective of his sister at the time. Apart from doing well in school, Wayne liked playing football. At the time of the incident, the 29-year-old was living in Adrian, West Virginia, and worked as a truck driver. He was married to Priscilla Bailey, and they had three kids together, besides Priscilla’s daughter, Mary, from a previous relationship.
At around 1 am on February 24, 1987, the police rushed to the Wyers’ house to find Wayne on the floor in the living room, incoherent. He had fallen off his chair and had a gunshot wound to his chest. Wayne was shot once with a .22-caliber rifle. While he was rushed to the hospital for treatment, he ultimately died of the injury about two hours later. What followed were startling revelations regarding what happened that night.
Who Killed Wayne Wyers?
The authorities questioned Priscilla, who initially stated that she had shot Wayne. At the time, Priscilla talked of abuse in the house and said that Wayne had been angry because his car had been wrecked. She said she had lent the vehicle to an acquaintance when Wayne was off working, and that person had damaged it. However, it was reported that Priscilla was secretly dating that man back then.
According to court testimony, an angry Wayne had then hit and slapped Priscilla several times in addition to holding a butcher’s knife to her throat, threatening to kill her. Wayne eventually passed out in the living room after drinking. Priscilla claimed to have shot him after that. However, the authorities weren’t so sure. As per the show, they didn’t see any bruising on Priscilla or any blood on her face from the beating she had talked about earlier. That’s when Priscilla changed her story, saying she didn’t pull the trigger but was still responsible for the murder.
At this point, it came to light that Mary, only 11-years-old at the time, had shot her stepfather at her mother’s insistence. Murder charges against her were dropped after she agreed to testify against Priscilla in court. On the witness stand, Mary detailed the abuse Wayne reportedly put Priscilla and the family through, after which her mother came up to her, asking if she would shoot Wayne. As per the show, Priscilla’s mother, Eva, testified regarding some letters her daughter had sent her in the past.
In those writings, Priscilla talked about planning to kill Wayne, even trying to use poison at one point. Eva added that Wayne once struck her so hard that she lost some hearing ability on one side. The defense stated that Priscilla was a battered woman who had faced a pattern of abuse and finally acted on it. On the other hand, the prosecution claimed she had many opportunities to leave and not kill him. In the end, the jury convicted Priscilla of first-degree murder in June 1988. She was released after serving a decade behind bars.