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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

What Made Cage Fighter Jarrod Wyatt Mutilate and Murder Taylor Powell?

     On the morning of March 21, 2010, in a house in Requa, California, a small town in the northwestern corner of the state at the mouth of the Klamath River, Del Norte County sheriff's deputies and officers with the Yurok Tribal Police responded to a murder scene reminiscent of of Hannibal Lector movie. The officer discovered, lying naked on the living room sofa, the blood-drenched and mutilated corpse of 21-year-old Taylor Powell. The victim's chest had been sliced open and his heart torn out of his body. An officer found the charred organ in a wood-burning stove. Powell's attacker had cut off the dead man's tongue, and had stripped all the skin off his face. Signs of a struggle included the presence of blood around the room as well as breakage, and knocked-over furniture.

     Jarrod Wyatt, a 29-year-old mixed martial arts fighter, told officers that he had killed and mutilated his friend and sparring partner, Taylor Powell. According to Wyatt, before the murder, he and Powell, along with two of their acquaintances, had been drinking hallucinogenic mushroom tea. Under the influence of this psychedelic drug, he had murdered and dismembered Powell in what he called a battle between God and the Devil.

     According to Dr. Neil Kushner, the forensic pathologist who performed the autopsy, the victim's organs had been removed while he was alive. (I presume this means that his heart was taken out last. If there are toxicological results supporting the ingestion of mushroom tea, this information, or any other drug-related findings, have not been made public.)

     Del Norte County District Attorney Jon Alexander charged Jarrod Wyatt with first degree murder, aggravated mayhem and torture, and a special circumstances count of extreme cruelty and depravity. If convicted of all three charges, the defendant could face up to three consecutive life sentences which means no possibility of parole.

     While the northern California cage fighter had confessed to a drug-induced homicide, his attorney, James Fallman, entered a double plea of not guilty, and not guilty by virtue of insanity. (In other words, I didn't do it, but if you find that I did, while I'm not mentally ill now, I was when I committed the murder I am denying.)

     In May 2012, a Del Norte County judge, after hearing from a battery of psychiatrists, ruled that Jarrod Wyatt was mentally competent to be tried for murder and the accompanying charges. The judge scheduled his trial for September 3, 2012.

     Just four days before the Crescent City trial was to get underway, the district attorney and the defense agreed to a plea deal. Under the judge-approved plea bargain, Jarrod Wyatt would be sentenced to 50 years to life. Pursuant to the sentencing agreement, the prisoner would not be eligible for parole until 2062. If he lived to be 79-years-old, he might have a chance for freedom. The cage fighter would probably die inside a large, state run cage.

     Following the announcement of the plea arrangement, prosecutor Jon Alexander said, "We saved Taylor Powell's family the agony from reliving the incident at the trial." The district attorney said he believed the murder was in fact premeditated, and not the product of a drug-induced delusion. Because there will be no trial, the public will not be informed of the prosecution's theory of the murder. (At least not for awhile. If Jarrod Wyatt had been even a minor entertainment celebrity, we'd know a lot more about this case.)

     James Fallman, Wyatt's attorney, reportedly said, "We looked for an agreement that would at least give him the opportunity to be paroled someday." Insisting the murder had not been premeditated, the defense attorney told reporters that his client had been "too damn high on drugs to premeditate it."

     Left to speculate on what drove Jerrod Wyatt to such a gruesome and violent act against his friend and sparring partner, I suspect the combined use of steroids and designer drugs like meth or bath salts. (It would be helpful to know if Wyatt, at the time of the murder, was also nude.) This murder doesn't look premeditated, and I don't buy the mushroom tea causation. Maybe some day the truth regarding the cause of this bizarre and grisly homicide will surface.  



  1. Mr. Fisher, Taylor was not the one found naked, Jarrod was. How do you know there was signs of a struggle with "breakage and knocked-over furniture"?

  2. Are you telling me that there was no struggle?

    1. I am telling you there wasnt, not much at least, my friends where there, one of the officers that came to the scene was a friend, and this is what ive been told by the people I know who witnessed it and from what I know of growing up knowing both people involved.

      Mushroom tea WAS involved, everyone there was on it at the time, Jarrod was also a moderate steroid user.

      Jarrod owed Taylor a lot of money, and they had recently had a falling out about it, but Taylor felt shitty about it and made friends with Jarrod again.

      Jarrod had a thing for Taylors Girlfriend, everybody knew about this.

      although there was some small signs of struggle, it literally took seconds for jarrod to subdue Taylor.

      Jarrod also cut off Taylor's tattoos, and removed his eyes...(and jarrod was the only one completely naked when found)

      When i was a young teen, I once caught Jarrod torturing a stray cat and I beat the shit out of him...

      about 5-6 years later, he raped a family member of mine, i did not find out about this till after the murder, they where just a kid at the time it happened, and kept it secret this entire time, out of fear i was told, due to threats from Jarrod.

      Nobody liked sparring with Jarrod, he had no self control and would fight specifically to try and injure you severely, aiming to brake bones and joints... one silver lining of training with somebody like him, made you REALLY good at avoiding attacks like that...

      Taylor, although still human, was always a good guy, he was the guy, that if you where in trouble, he would find a way to help you, or help you find some one who could, he wasnt perfect, but God... some days I still cant believe this all really happened, it just doesnt feel real, maybe im sheltered, but I just never understood how horrific human beings can be till this... i still occasionally have nightmares about it.

      I found this blog post, because ive avoided looking up anything about sentencing for years because ive been afraid that maybe they would go easy on him, and i just wasnt sure how id deal with that... anyway, there are the facts as I know them from almost as close to the situation as one can get, and still be alive, I can tell you now, that area, is sick and diseased, its not just this, there is so much violence and drugs there... im glad im finally out of there, now i just have to learn how to let go of all the friends ive lost to that disgusting hell hole of an area...

      Guess im just learning to accept that the monsters we invent for our stories, exist so we can fool ourselves about what we really are.

  3. where were the others that consumed this tea? what did they do during and someone should show a toxicology report tea not very likley pscilocybon lol yeah right

  4. im also curious if there was a rape test done on body

  5. Some strange things are that this guy came back to get a dog. The females testimony and others was that they cam to location from a bar. Did he have dog there? He was sober enough to come back and get his dog. Cops wldnt take a lot of females statement cause she was under influence. But murderers statemnt okay to take.this girl was there and didn't get help when all this was going on. And supposedly the victim was coming at her with knife at some point on couch according to her statement to police. Then the third guy the one that could clear things up. the dog man. Cops get him on suspision of selling drugs and what not. But he wasn't prepared to say what cops wanted to hear. This all was a crock of crap lies. The murderer and female covering for each other

  6. This is his sister Jazmine..I believe he should of been sentenced under insanity plea. I've been out of touch for years. Can we help Jarrod?

  7. I want to get back in touch with my brother, sorry I've been away so long Jarrod