CAUGHT ON TAPE: Marni Yang Admits Deerfield Murder

Patch has obtained a tape recording of convicted killer Marni Yang detailing the deadly shooting to her best friend.

According to prosecutors, Marni Yang made one “big mistake” when it came to her plan to murder 42-year-old Rhoni Reuter back in 2007: she told her best friend about it afterwards.

"I took the first shot," police secretly recorded Yang telling Christi Paschen after the murder at a restaurant in Arlington Heights. "I remember screaming cause at that point I realized we are now at the point of no return.'" 

Last week a jury convicted Yang of first-degree murder and intentional homicide of an unborn child. Authorities say she brutally shot and killed Reuter at her Deerfield condo. At the time, Reuter was six-months pregnant with the child of former Bears player Shaun Gayle. Yang was also romantically involved with the Super Bowl winner.

Detectives got their big break in the investigation more then a year after the deadly shooting in March of 2009 when Yang’s best friend, Christi Paschen agreed to collaborate with them.

On March 2, 2009, police strapped a body wire on Paschen and instructed her to get Yang to disclose the details of the murder while dining at Denny’s. 

"I took maybe one or two steps into the kitchen to finish the job," you hear Yang explain to Paschen. "All she was doing was screaming until she went down."

Patch has obtained that tape recording from the Deerfield Police Department. Click on the video above to hear what Yang admitted to Paschen that night. You can also follow along by reading a transcript provided by prosecutors below.

Yang was arrested shortly after the conversation was taped by police and was charged with the crime. The recording was played by the prosecution during the trial. After three weeks of court proceedings, the jury found Yang guilty on all counts. Her sentencing is scheduled for April 29. She faces a minimum sentence of life in prison.

Transcript of Marni Yang’s Conversation with Friend Christi Paschen On March 2, 2009:

Yang: Okay, not only that but think about this: if they had any evidence that tied you or I to the scene, it’s not going to take them a year to come up with it. They’ve collected all the evidence from the scene, they’ve had it all processed through this lab, that lab, whatever. If there was anything there it doesn’t take a year and a half to come back. It doesn’t.

Paschen: Well, okay. You said it was dark.

Yang: Mhm, it was dark. I didn’t touch anything. I took maybe two steps and I took ...

Paschen: What did you see?

Yang: All I saw was … everything was in shadows, the kitchen was dark. Okay? In fact, it was so dark I wasn’t even positive that I was making straight shots. Okay? Didn’t even, didn’t … she, she opened up the door and all she saw was a dark-skinned person with sunglasses holding a gun like this. With a hoodie on, okay? And … she started screaming. I took the first shot. I remember screaming. ‘Cause at that point I realized we are now at the point of no return. Okay? Any thoughts that we had about turning back – we gotta finish this now. And I just started emptying the clip. … She went, 'cause she had already started to come out of the apartment, she went backwards into the kitchen. Fell against the counter, fell against a counter, with the floor and it was all in shadows. It was all in shadows.

Paschen: Well how was it laid out?

Yang: The kitchen?

Paschen: Yea.

Yang: I never got far in there enough to see.

Paschen: Okay.

Yang: I never got far in there enough to see. Okay? Um … and don’t forget, I also, I had the dark glasses on. Um ... I took maybe one or two steps into the kitchen to finish the job. All she was doing was screaming until she went down, and then when she went down she took her foot and she took one good kick at me, got me in the shin. Um, it was like weak by that time so “Uh,” like that. And that was it. I just, I, took one last shot, in the head – finished her off. And I took off. Oh, I closed – I had gloves on – closed the door behind me. Her leg was sticking out into the hallway; I had to kick it inside. Then I slammed the door; took off. That was it.

Paschen: Okay.

Yang: Okay, back then … well that was back then. 

Wilton tidwell March 24, 2011 at 05:18 AM
Too much time, too much money too many groupies wanting the same thing is poison to the human soul.
Randy Aguilar March 28, 2011 at 02:44 PM
This is a very well written article. I wish more journalist kept the public updated this way and did not leer us away from the truth. Natalie Kaplan does it again !
Ed Eusebio April 18, 2012 at 05:12 PM
We were friends with the Yangs and their two small children, back in the late 80's in the North Park neighborhood in Chicago. Lived in the same apt. building, across the hall. Used to go to the huge park, and nature center off Peterson Ave. together, where our kids would play. We were similar in that we were a mixed-race couple with kids. Marnie was extremely talkative, young looking, naive and a bit socially odd, with perhaps an inferiority complex. We could tell that the marriage was a bit rocky, but I would have never imaged her committing murder 20 years later. A lot can change in the trajectory of a persons life, I guess.
tiffany October 26, 2012 at 03:40 AM
i really dont know ms. yang personally but i did spend time with her lake county and i dont beleave she had nething to do with the killin i really think that the bears player did it ... he didnt want to b tied down wit a baby and he didnt want to have to deal with the expecting mother to b ... my heart goes out to ms. yang's family i think it sad that lake county dont take the tyme too look through everything that county is only worried bout how fast they can send someone to prison i do hope ms. yang wins her appeal she dont need to b locked up shes a good person and a wonderfull mother that has worked hard to provide for her family as a single mom .... and for shaun karma will catch up to u he knows what he did and the lord above knows and if he dont ever pay for what he did to that women and to marni yang and her family beleave me our GOD will take care of him .... fess up shaun and tell the truth ... u know ur bogus ... u not only killed ur own child but u took a innocent mother away from her childern .... tis is something u got to live with ...
Chilawyer October 26, 2012 at 04:55 AM
Tiffany, you are a moron. You try to exonerate a confessed murderer and you slander the victim whose child she murdered.


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