Created: November 15, 2021 06:10 PM
ATTICA, N.Y. (WHEC) — It's now been more than five years since the investigation into the death of Craig Rideout, a Penfield father.
He was found wrapped in a tarp in the Yates County woods back in July of 2016. Investigators say he was beaten and strangled.
Months later his estranged wife, Laura, his sons Colin and Alex, and Laura's boyfriend, Paul Tucci, were charged with murder.
Alex was convicted of only with tampering with evidence. He was recently paroled.
Tucci was acquitted on all charges.
Colin and Laura are still in prison after being convicted of murder and sentenced to up to life in prison.
News10NBC Anchor Brett Davidson went to Attica Correctional Facility last week and sat down with Colin Rideout for an exclusive interview.
During the course of the trial, Colin was silent and never took the witness stand.
He broke his silence with Davidsen because, as he says, everyone deserves to consider the truth.
Davidsen and Colin spoke for almost two hours in a community room inside the walls of the maximum-security prison that Colin has been in for the past four years.
Brett Davidsen: "We've got a lot of ground to cover so let me start with the central question — Did you kill your father?"
Colin Rideout: "No."
Davidsen: "Did you assist in the disposal of your father's body?"
What Rideout did confess to is cleaning up the blood at the murder scene.
Rideout: "When I arrived in the basement there was blood on the floor but there wasn't a body. You just hoped that something else had happened."
Rideout said he was summoned to the house by someone who was never tied to the murder or attempted cover-up.
Davidsen: "Did she point you to the basement and say something had happened down there?"
Rideout: "She said she had been told to clean up the basement. [...] There was a splotch of blood on the floor and that's really all that I remember seeing. So I got some paper towels — and wiped it up, gathered up the paper towels, bagged them, and at that point the blood had gotten onto my jeans."
In fact, his blood-soaked clothes were a major piece of evidence used to convict him.
Davidsen: "There was a lot of blood on those pants."
Rideout: "Uh, so the stain was — it wasn't huge, I mean. [...] It looks like a huge amount but the liquid spreads."
But at the trial, prosecutors also brought a blood spatter expert to the stand, who said two drops on the pocket of Colin Rideout's jeans made it very likely he was in close proximity as Craig Rideout was being beaten and strangled.
Rideout: "It's a little bit of wishful thinking, because I wasn't there when the murder happened and the way those stains got there I'm guessing is either contact in the bag with other articles or if the paper towels had dripped onto them when they were in the bag. I don't know, but it's not spatter."
By that afternoon, investigators began asking questions about his father's disappearance.
Davidsen: "So you didn't want to tell them about the blood you had seen in the basement?"
Rideout: "No, because I didn't know how that fit into what was going on."
If Colin Rideout didn't take part in the murder, he certainly didn't seem to want to know who did, claiming he was afraid of finding out, and instead, continued to help conceal the evidence.
The following day, he and his younger brother, Alex, are caught disposing of garbage bags in a pond at Mendon Ponds Park.
Davidsen: "When investigators show up at Mendon Ponds, you deny knowing what's in the bags."
Rideout: "Right. I mean, I knew, I just didn't want to say because it was horrible."
Davidsen: "At that point did you know you were in legal trouble?"
Rideout: "Uh, yeah I was figuring that out."
In one bag, the bloody clothes. In the other, empty bottles of drain cleaner.
Damning evidence, but evidence Rideout insists doesn't point to him as the killer.
Rideout: "The pieces of the puzzle have not been put together correctly. And I want to do that, obviously, because I want to be exonerated for a murder I didn't commit, but also because the truth is something that just matters objectively."
Over the next few days, News10NBC will air the rest of Davidsen's conversation with Colin Rideout. On Tuesday, hear his response to claims made by his own mother in her appeal that he and his brother were the ones responsible for the murder, and he reveals more about the store surveillance videos that were used at trial to try to prove that the murder of Craig Rideout was pre-meditated.
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