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Friday, June 30, 2006

Did police err in sado-sex killer case?

From the front page of The Star. Further affiant sayeth not:

Spicer probe leaves questions
Under the watchful eyes of homicide investigators, the future “most wanted couple in America” left their Independence apartment May 17 and disappeared.
During a 20-minute interview just before authorities ordered them to leave the apartment, Richard D. Davis, a convicted rapist, and his girlfriend Dena Riley had given investigators from the Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department reason to suspect they were involved in the slaying of Marsha Spicer. Her nude, battered body had been found in a shallow grave in Lafayette County two days earlier.
But instead of telling his officers to arrest the couple, Sheriff Kerrick Alumbaugh decided to seek a search warrant and order them from their home.
That decision and others made that night — actions Alumbaugh emphatically defends — were key factors that allowed the couple’s subsequent eight-day flight from arrest that spanned three states, touched off a nationwide manhunt, and culminated in the alleged kidnapping and sexual assault of a 5-year-old Kansas girl.
Was the initial contact with Davis and Riley mishandled? Could all that followed have been avoided, especially the sexual assault that left the child with injuries so severe that she had to be flown to a Kansas City hospital for treatment?

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Thanks for your cooperation.
Greg Reeves

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