Uncle claims Josh Young was bullied into false confession by father


by Gene Kang


Posted on December 10, 2012 at 7:34 PM

Updated Monday, Dec 10 at 8:30 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The court has to determine who murdered Trey Zwicker, 14, behind Liberty High School. Joshua Gouker and his son, Josh Young, are accused of beating Zwicker to death with a baseball bat. Zwicker was Gouker’s stepson and Young’s stepbrother.

Rodney Gunter, Josh Young's uncle talked to WHAS11 and claims that Young, 16, is innocent.

"Josh was out here, he cried. He was a pallbearer. What kind of cold hearted person could do all that kind of stuff and just kill a kid, beat the kid to death" Gunter said.       

Gunter says Young was bullied into giving false confessions by his father and in pages worth of evidence, witnesses say Young admitted he did it.

"No, I'm telling you there ain't an ounce in my body or being that believes that about that boy," Gunter said.

Gunter says Zwicker and Young were best friends. Young lived with Gouker for only two months before the murder. Young told police Gouker would smoke marijuana with him often.

"It started off on my first home visit on Christmas Eve and then every time I visited him we smoked and when I moved in it was every day," Young said in a police interview.

In a jail house interview, Gouker told WHAS11 he killed Zwicker.

"After I hit him I didn't say nothing. I couldn't even believe I did it," Joshua Gouker said in August.

But Gouker has changed his story many times.

Prosecutors believe Young is the one who killed Zwicker and that Gouker was the master mind. Gunter claims his nephew was caught in Gouker's web of lies.

"Because he got scared that he would go back to prison and he needed a scapegoat," Gunter said.

Police think Gouker wanted Zwicker dead as revenge after the teen’s mother aborted their baby.

Young has lost his mother and grandmother while sitting behind bars.

The murder trial is scheduled for April 2013.