Monroe inmate confesses to killing guard Jayme Biendl

Feb 11, 2011

Byron Scherf, a convicted rapist already serving a life sentence has confessed to the killing of Monroe Reformatory guard Jayme Biendl.

According to a search warrant made public Friday, the 52-year old Scherf asked detectives for a chance to tell them what happened.

The Herald of Everett reports that after acknowledging and waiving his right to remain silent, Scherf admitted to the killing:

"I'll just get right to the point. I'm responsible for the death of the correctional officer at the Monroe, uh, correctional facility," Scherf is quoted as saying during a videotaped interview. "I strangled her to death on Jan. 29 at approximately 8:40 p.m. in the chapel."

The Herald's Diana Hefley writes that Scherf reportedly told detectives he was angry at Biendl over how she had spoken with him earlier that evening while he worked in the reformatory chapel. He said the more he thought about it, he decided to hurt her.

"I got to the point where I knew I was going to kill her," he said.  "I'm certainly sorry."

Scherf said he struggled with Biendl for about four minutes while she tried and apparently failed to call for help, partly because he disabled her radio.

Scherf said Biendl bit and scratched him and stomped on his feet trying to get free. After the two ended up on the floor, he said he used a cable from an amplifier to strangle her to death.

Authorities are investigating whether to charge Scherf with aggravated first-degree murder, one of the few crimes in Washington that can bring the death penalty.