10-10-2009, 08:57 AM #31
Detectives are done with Lewiston man
Published: Lewiston Tribune
Spokane detectives are not actively investigating the man they interviewed last week in this area, said sheriff's Capt. Doug Silver of the serial killer task force.
"We haven't included him or totally excluded him from being a suspect, but we are no longer working any information from him," Silver said Wednesday.
Two detectives from the task force visited the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley twice in the past few weeks to investigate a man who has been a longtime suspect in several murders in this area.
The man is a suspect in the 1981 murder of Kristin David and the 1982 murders of Kristina Nelson and Jacqueline (Brandy) Miller and the disappearance of Steven Pearsall that same year.
He is also a suspect in the 1979 disappearance of 12-year-old Christina White, according to police.
The man has not been charged in any of the cases, however.
The Spokane task force is investigating the murders of seven women in the Spokane area since November.
The body of another woman linked to the case was found in Tacoma in December.
10-10-2009, 08:58 AM #32
Published: Lewiston Tribune
Sitting on shelves in area law enforcement offices are binders titled "Kristen David," "Christina White," "Toni Ann Tedder" and "Joyce LePage."
The pages inside have yellowed. The signatures at the bottom of the reports are of men who have since retired or died.
But the binders of unsolved mysteries -- some murder, some disappearances -- are pulled off the shelves every now and then, dusted off and reviewed.
In the case of Kristen David, the young University of Idaho student who was found dismembered in the Snake River near Clarkston in 1981, a detective at the Latah County Sheriff's Office has begun to re-read the volumes of reports and interviews.
New information on an old suspect who has since died in prison surfaced recently, Sgt. Earl Aston said. Although he declined to say what the information is, or which suspect he's interested in, he did say he would renew the now 16-year-old investigation.
David's grisly murder remains one of the area's most frustrating cases, partly because of the horrendous nature of the crime and partly because closure has eluded a cadre of relentless investigators intent on finding her killer.
She disappeared June 26, 1981, while riding her bicycle between Lewiston and Moscow. Several motorists reported seeing her on U.S. Highway 95 near Genesee, but she never arrived in Lewiston.
Eight days later, a headless torso and a leg wrapped in plastic bags were found by a boater on the north shore of the Snake River near Red Wolf Crossing in Clarkston.
The next day, a dismembered head, arms and part of a leg were found downstream from the bridge.
The intense investigation that followed took investigators on a search for the killer as far away as Florida.
Still, no arrest has been made.
Aston hopes his new information will change that, but he doesn't have much time on hands. He is the lead detective in the Hazel Martin murder case of last year -- an investigation he says is well on its way toward solution.
Martin, 73, was last seen alive May 17, 1996, at a card party at the Princeton Grange. After she was reported missing, her home in Princeton was searched and no sign of struggle was found. Days later, bedding eventually identified as Martin's was discovered along the Palouse River.
Some five miles from where the bedding was found, a skull and lower jaw bone were discovered this spring in the White Pine Drive area by mushroom hunters. Since then, Aston said, a femur has been found.
Initial indications were the skull showed signs of trauma from blunt force, he said, but forensic tests that could determine exactly how she died have not yet been completed.
Aston said the Martin case is one that won't be added to the binders on the shelf.
"We're very optimistic about solving this case. ... We're not going to stop until we solve it."
Aston and Latah County Sheriff Jeff Crouch say they have suspects and know why Martin was killed.
A homicide last year in Pullman also has been added to the area's list of unsolved mysteries. But, like the Hazel Martin murder, the Dorothy Martin murder is being worked on night and day by optimistic investigators.
"It's a very active case," said Sgt. Sam Sorem of the Pullman Police Department.
Martin, an 89-year-old resident of the Statesman Condominium on Military Hill, was found murdered by asphyxiation in her bed in July 1996.
Investigators in both the Hazel and Dorothy Martin cases say a connection between the two murders is not likely, despite the similarities in age, last name and time frame. But a link has not been ruled out completely.
"In murder investigations, you don't rule anything out until you have solid evidence that would tell you otherwise," Sorem said.
"New information still comes in all the time, and Baker (Fred Baker, the lead investigator on the case) checks up on all of them," he said.
Investigators have a lot to work with now, he added.
In addition to having "persons of interest," there are a set of missing keys to Martin's apartment and missing items that should have been found inside.
"The only person that knows they're gone is the person that committed the crime," Sorem said.
Baker will be presenting information about the Dorothy Martin case at a meeting of Washington investigators involved in Homicide Information Tracking System (HITS) this week in Kennewick. The hope is after investigators present the evidence in their unsolved murder cases, similarities with other murders will arise.
Det. Joel Hastings of the Clarkston Police Department also will attend the meeting.
Hastings has the Toni Ann Tedder murder on his shelf.
"To solve this, we would need some additional information and we're just not there yet," he said.
Tedder, 18, was stabbed while she was sleeping on a couch in her family's living room in Clarkston in 1990. Another family member was sleeping on the floor near Tedder during the attack and came face to face with the murderer, Hastings said.
The fisherman-type knife used to stab Tedder was found near her.
Over the years, Hastings said, one suspect in a field of many has not been eliminated.
A Tedder family member said she believes Toni was killed by mistake -- that the murderer intended to kill someone else in another house.
Another case in southeastern Washington that has plagued investigators for years is the disappearance and probable homicide of 12-year-old Christina White of Asotin in 1979.
The White disappearance is unlike most unsolved mysteries in that investigators are certain they know the culprit.
"We do have a primary suspect who has been our primary suspect for years," said Sgt. Tom White of the Asotin County Sheriff's Office.
In fact, he said, White was last seen standing with her bike outside an Asotin home often frequented by the suspect.
White had called her mother from the home to tell her she felt ill from the heat. Her mother told her to put a towel over her head and come to the Asotin County Fair when she felt better.
She has never been found.
The suspect in her disappearance is believed to have killed again.
Investigators in the White case and in the Lewiston Civic Theatre case announced in 1989 they shared the same suspect.
In the Civic Theatre case, police believe the suspect, who was working at the theater that night, was presented with an opportunity to kill Kristina Nelson, 21, and her stepsister Jacqueline (Brandy) Miller when the two women walked by -- and perhaps inside -- the theater Sept. 12, 1982.
Nelson had left a note in her Normal Hill apartment telling her boyfriend she and Miller were walking to a downtown Lewiston grocery store.
Steven R. Pearsall, a janitor at the theater, was dropped there later that night by friends. He told his friends he intended to do some work, wash some laundry and practice his clarinet.
Police believe the suspect killed all three of them that night.
In 1984, the decomposed bodies of Nelson and Miller were found by a Kendrick youth at the bottom of a steep embankment along State Highway 3, about 2 1/2 miles north of Kendrick.
Pearsall has never been found.
Former Lewiston police Capt. Duane Ailor, who died this summer, was the primary investigator in the Civic Theatre murders.
According to LPD Capt. Paul Ayers, nothing has changed in regard to Ailor's suspect.
"There are four victims involved (including Christina White) and one suspect. We're 99 percent certain who the culprit is," Ailor told the Tribune in a 1995 interview.
The suspect was interviewed numerous times by police and then refused to cooperate, telling investigators to talk instead with his attorney.
He still lives and works in the community.
Although Pearsall could not be ruled out completely because he's never been found, Ailor believed Pearsall was a victim.
Sometimes in an unsolved mystery, a fresh approach may be what it takes to close the case.
In the 26-year-old murder of Joyce LePage, a Washington State University student found in skeletal form in a ravine about 10 miles south of the university, a sergeant from WSU's police department recently has reactivated the case.
"I'm taking an active second look," Sgt. Don Maupin said.
LePage, 22, was last seen by friends who dropped her off at her apartment July 21, 1971. LePage often would stay at Stevens Hall on campus even though the building was being remodeled that summer and was supposed to empty.
It is there, Maupin said, that LePage was killed.
Her skeletal remains -- which bore signs of a stabbing -- were found almost a year later by a boy hunting for opals in a steep ravine off Wawawai Road.
Maupin said he has suspects and a motive, but declined to elaborate on either.
Other unsolved murders and disappearances continue to haunt law enforcement officials and family members in this area:
After working an evening shift alone, waitress Janice Foiles, 18, was killed in 1969 by two blows to the head at a Moscow cafe. There was no sexual assault, police said, and nothing was taken from the restaurant. Police found no weapon and no motive.
In June 1979, Gayla Schaper, 27, was last seen feeding her horses on Lenville Road. Nearby meadows were excavated and pieces of clothing were found, but investigators declined to comment on the results of forensic tests on the clothing.
Patty Otto, a 24-year-old Lewiston woman, hasn't been seen since September 1976. Her husband was a prime suspect in her disappearance, but he died in prison, where he was serving 25 years for hiring killers to murder Duane Ailor, who at that time was a Lewiston detective.
A young man who has never been identified floated down the Snake River near Hellar Bar in June 1982. When sheriff's deputies recovered his body, they discovered he had been shot. His age was determined to be 18- to 22-years old, he was 5 feet, 11 inches tall and weighed about 150 pounds.
Daniel Walker, 31, a WSU student, was found shot to death in his pickup truck on the shoulder of Lewiston's Old Spiral Highway in April 1982. Police believe the shooting was drug-related and have issued a warrant in connection with the shooting for Edward L. Hart, who, after an extensive search in Alaska and Mexico, has never been found.
C. Bruce and Lynn Peeples were found strangled in their burned Grangeville apartment in April 1994. Their killer has never been found.
Last edited by believe09; 11-28-2011 at 12:03 PM. Reason: Bolding vics names
10-10-2009, 09:00 AM #33
Published: Lewiston Tribune
He drives a late-model car that he's pretty proud of. He lives alone or with a girlfriend or his mother, who tends to be dominating.
He's intelligent, but considered an underachiever.
He has at least a high school education.
And he likes to kill if the opportunity comes up.
He's still out there. And his crimes are decades old.
Kristin David, Christina White, Kristina Nelson, Jacqueline (Brandy) Miller, Steven Pearsall.
Five people police believe all suffered the same fate -- all at the hands of the same man, Lewiston Police Lt. Alan Johnson believes.
The police cases are all still open, and Johnson, the Lewiston Police Department's head investigator on the crimes, says new information has been discovered.
But he's not saying just what that information is.
"The information is background in nature, and it has not produced any eye witnesses or new witness names," says Johnson. "Technology is one avenue that has been and is being explored, and DNA technology is one that we're kind of focusing on."
Most of the recent investigation has focused on the Christina White case with the Asotin County Sheriff's Department.
If the crimes are all connected, solving her murder should give some clues to the others as well.
"Every crime has a piece of the puzzle that is always going to be out there -- we just have to find it," Johnson says.
"Sometimes we have to be satisfied with knowing who is responsible, even if we can't get that individual into a court of law."
And the police do know who committed the serial murders, says Johnson. They just can't release the name.
But a suspect profile done when the cases were still fresh offers some clues.
The profile, a yellowed, typed list with notes scrawled in the margins, is in several of the blue binders that contain all the information police have on the cases.
It's most likely an FBI profile, since that was one of the only agencies doing profiling work at the time, says Lt. Ron Seipert. But the profile doesn't have an author name or an agency's heading.
The title at the top of the page is "Psychological Profile of Lust Murderer."
The list of 20 characteristics that follows reads like a horror novel -- seemingly benign at first, and then becoming a recipe for a psychopath:
Subject will have lived in the area for a period of time and will be known to various people in his community.
Bite marks or stab wounds, commonly made after death ...
As this fantasy wears off, will kill again and more frequently as time passes ...
Will have fantasized about what he would do to a girl if the situation presented itself, i.e. premeditated and when the situation does occur, he conducts himself as he has fantasized.
And the final characteristic: Might have left the area after the killing, moving to another town and establishing himself (job, etc.) before he will kill again.
Many detectives believe there are two types of serial killers, says Johnson, those who go on a killing spree and then stop for some reason, and those who just go on killing.
And which one is the suspect of these crimes?
"Will he kill again? It's a possibility," says Johnson. "We can't say for sure that he hasn't since these cases."
The detectives on the case when the profile was new believed the suspect matched at least some of the characteristics, says Johnson.
For instance, the suspect had a prior record -- he was arrested years earlier in California for allegedly breaking into a mortuary.
He was involved in the community, and was relatively well known.
And the suspect has moved from the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley, and now lives in a southern state. Law enforcement authorities there, says Johnson, have been alerted.
As far as the authorities know, he has committed no new crimes.
10-10-2009, 09:01 AM #34
Killer's crimes are more than 20 years old
Published: Lewiston Tribune
For 21 years, someone has been keeping a dark secret.
And though at times the Snake River, a ravine near Kendrick, and even a Lewiston theater have offered up clues to investigators, the secret of who killed five area residents is still hidden.
The five unsolved murders police in the region are working on all happened in a four-year period, beginning with a vanishing little girl.
April 28, 1979
Christina White was at the Asotin County Fair the morning before she disappeared. She left the fair and went to a friend's house, where she called her mother at about 2 p.m. to tell her she was feeling ill from the heat.
Her mom told her to put a towel over her head and walk home when she felt better. Twelve-year old Christina never appeared.
People helped the Asotin County Sheriff's Posse search for the girl. One of the men who offered to help would later be considered the primary suspect in her disappearance.
Neither Christina White, nor the 10-speed bicycle she had with her that day, has ever been found.
June 26, 1981
University of Idaho student Kristin David was biking from Moscow to Lewiston on the day she vanished. Though several motorists came forward to say they saw her near Genesee on U.S. Highway 95, she never arrived in Lewiston.
It was eight days before a clue to the missing 22-year old student surfaced, eight days before the Snake River yielded its grisly offering to a boater near the Red Wolf Crossing in Clarkston.
A headless torso and a leg wrapped in plastic bags had washed ashore.
The next day, arms, part of a leg and a dismembered head were found further downstream, near the bridge.
Sept. 12, 1982
Kristina Nelson and her stepsister Jacqueline (Brandy) Miller were headed to a downtown grocery store from Nelson's Normal Hill apartment.
Nelson, 21, and Miller, 18, walked by the Lewiston Civic Theatre. They may have gone inside.
Steven R. Pearsall was a janitor at the theater. He had friends drop him off there that night to do a little work, a little laundry and practice his clarinet in the usually empty building.
All three were killed that night, police believe, by the same man responsible for White's and David's murders.
The badly decomposed bodies of Nelson and Miller were found in 1984 by a Kendrick youth. They'd been placed at the bottom of a steep embankment along State Highway 3, about 2 miles north of Kendrick.
Pearsall's remains have never been found.
10-10-2009, 04:25 PM #35
There are searches going on all weekend and this following week for the remains of Christine White.
10-22-2009, 03:44 PM #36Registered User
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- West Virginia
Interesting case, Kline. Do keep us posted, please.
10-22-2009, 04:26 PM #37
It might be interesting to research unsolved murders and/or missing persons cases in and around Mint Hill (which I believe is in North Carolina...A suburb of Charlotte).
Being a rural mail carrier? Wouldn't that be a serial killer's dream job?
10-22-2009, 05:03 PM #38Registered User
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There is a web site that covers this case in detail including NAMING THE PRIME SUSPECT (something I'm a little uncomfortable with)
I was aware that there was a prime suspect who worked at the CivicTheater and had some sort of ties to the Christina White. Posters on the above site claim that this suspect also was involved in finding the body of Kristin Davis and had a prior arrest in Calif for breaking into a mortuary to "gain access to" the body of a young girl. In addition, Kline mentions an incident with a real estate agent in post #16 above.
If these are all true, it looks enough of a cicumstantial case to get a conviction.
10-23-2009, 05:00 PM #39
Wow! I am glad to see this thread so active today. thank you Kline for the updates.
Do you think the killer only killed in Idaho? Or is it possible he was active along the NW Coast?
When I went through the thread again today I immediately thought of Misty Copsey. She disappeared from a fair in WA. http://www.thenewstribune.com/misty/
It is time for me to head out of here (work - yay!!) and head home but I am interested in looking into any missing persons or unsolved homicides in SC. It is possible however a little unlikely someone who murdered 5 people would just stop.'The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated'
10-26-2009, 12:28 PM #40
Mint Hill is very close to Charlotte, NC. I didn't find anything on Mint Hill's PD site regarding missing people or unsolved homicides. If the POI was continuting to kill I would imagine he would go to Charlotte considering Mint HIll is such a small town.
Here is a link to Charlotte's Missing Persons linked on the PD. I am sure there are tons more than this. I looked through the unsolved homicides in the area and saw nothing that seemed like a good match, at least in my opinion.
These two cases are interesting. Alison Foy and Angela Rothen did not know eachother yet their bodies were found in the same place. Angela had disappeared 18 months before Alison. Both had murdered presumably by the same person. Their bodies were found about 4 hours from Mint Hill, NC.
Lisa Hohman, 2005 - 16 yrs old found murdered in Maxton, NC (1.5 hours from Mint Hill)
http://www.ncwanted.com/ncwanted_home/story/3031362/'The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated'
10-26-2009, 03:24 PM #41Find Brian Shaffer!!
Janet Christiansen, Kaiden, and Family, justice WILL prevail!
JUSTICE FOR AMBER!
~*Cancel my subscription, I'm THROUGH with your issues*~
10-30-2009, 07:33 PM #42Registered User
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Can the neighbor of the girls (the one who swung the golf club) identify the poi as the person who tried to break in?
10-30-2009, 07:43 PM #43Registered User
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- Oct 2009
Oh, of course I have more questions. On the night of the Pearsall (sp?) disappearance and the murder of the two girls - what was the poi doing in the theater. It said he'd been there, left to eat, and then came back. Was there a rehearsal, or was he working there or what?
Also - he has found the bodies of two dead girls himself? One of whom was an apparent suicide? Does anyone have info on the suicide. Does it sound like it really was suicide? How instrumental was he in finding Davis' body?
Editing my last post. Still with the questions. After looking at the Yuku site I have addl ?'s. Has LE released anything about what they feel is the cause of death in any of the cases where remains were found? Davis' remains were apparently dismembered? What about the two girls found together, any dismemberment there?
Can anyone give me approx dates that the POI lived in various cities and states, preferably going all the way back to California if that's where he lived first. Anything along those lines would be helpful. Also, how old is this guy?
I understand that the POI is a parent or a step-parent? Maybe he's been the boyfriend of other women with children in the past. Has LE checked with social services in all of the jurisdictions where he's lived to see if there have been any reports made to CPS regarding him? When I worked for CPS I found that people frequently abuse members of their own family in addition to committing criminal acts against others. There was overlap in the area of sex crimes. Frequently, abuse in the home isn't prosecuted criminally though, so you have to check with social services. LE would be the only entity that could make that inquiry and get that info.
Last edited by hopetohelp; 10-30-2009 at 08:47 PM.
10-31-2009, 03:32 AM #44Registered User
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- Oct 2009
Ok, so more questions still. In addition to those I've already posted. What kind of car did the poi have during the time that the two girls and Steven disappeared? One wonders how the poi pulled all of that off unless the crime scene was at the theater and then remains were taken and dumped (with maybe Pearsall's being left at the theater). Since they both apparently worked there, did Steven Pearsall know the poi? What was their relationship? Were they friends? For that matter, was the poi friends with Nelson or Davis due to perhaps interfacing at the theater? The places where remains have been found in these cases, how far are they from an actual roadway?
10-31-2009, 03:05 PM #45Former Member
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