‘This is your chance to tell us why:’ Prosecutors play detectives’ interview, arrest of Chandler Halderson

MADISON, Wis. — Prosecutors in the Chandler Halderson homicide trial played the full interview investigators had with him before ultimately arresting him for the murder of his parents, Bart and Krista Halderson.

In the interview, which lasted nearly two hours on the evening of July 8, Dane County Sheriff’s Office Detectives Brian Shunk and William Hendrickson again asked Chandler Halderson to recount his version of events of the days leading up to and after his parents allegedly left to go to their cabin in northern Wisconsin.

Detectives asked Halderson to go into great detail about every day from June 30 to July 7, asking what he did in the morning, afternoon and night of those dates. At times, Halderson appeared to have trouble piecing together what happened on each day, often correcting himself and asking investigators what day they were talking about.

In the middle of the interview, Halderson asked for some medicine for a headache he said was developing.

Halderson did not know at the time that the Dane County Sheriff’s Office had discovered the dismembered torso of Bart Halderson on property owned by the girlfriend of his girlfriend’s mother that afternoon, near an area where the couple had identified seeing Chandler earlier in the week. Also discovered were multiple cutting tools — including scissors and a handheld saw — in an oil drum near where the human remains were found.

At the end of the timeline and a review of Chandler’s statements, the detectives cut to the chase and confronted him: they thought he was lying.

“So I think it’s time to start talking about what happened to your parents. Like the truthful version,” Det. Hendrickson told him in the video. “We have like 20 pages of writing. We’re going to start with a clean white piece of paper for you to start telling the truth.”

When Halderson tried to interject, Hendrickson cut him off and told him multiple times to listen.

“This is the only chance you’re going to have to tell us the truth,” he said. “I can’t tell you what we know, but we know you’re not telling us the truth. We know your parents are no longer with us, okay? And we know the reason why, okay. You need to tell the truth.”

MORE: Full coverage of the Chandler Halderson homicide investigation and trial — live stream, previous stories, timelines and interviews

According to the criminal complaint in the case, Halderson was arrested shortly after asking for a lawyer. After he was told he was being arrested, Halderson asked what happened.

“You know what happened. We’re not going to tell you what happened. You know what happened. You were there when it happened,” Det. Hendrickson said to him in the video.

Halderson denied being there when something happened to his parents, but detectives again accused him before putting him in handcuffs and booking him into the Dane County Jail.

“We know more than you think we know,” Det. Shunk told Halderson. “There’s people that have told us things, we have evidence, we have proof that more has happened, okay? So your parents never made it to the cabin and I think you know that.”

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