Hearing To Begin In Kansas On Quadruple Homicide
Date 2014/3/11 4:09:56 | Topic: News
|OTTAWA, Kan. (AP) -- Prosecutors were scheduled to begin presenting evidence today in the capital murder case against a 28-year-old man accused of killing four people, including a toddler, at an eastern Kansas farm.|
Kyle Trevor Flack faces several charges, including capital murder, first-degree murder and attempted rape in the deaths last spring of Andrew Stout, 30; Steven White, 31; Kaylie Bailey, 21; and her 18-month-old daughter, Lana Leigh Bailey. The adults' bodies were discovered last May at Stout's farm in rural Ottawa, which is about 50 miles southwest of Kansas City. Search crews found the child's body several days later in neighboring Osage County.
Prosecutors, who filed amended charges against Flack in February reducing the original number of counts from eight to five, originally sought to have the preliminary hearing closed to the public, but withdrew that motion in January. They're expected to provide details about what happened at the farmhouse at the hearing. In Kansas, probable cause statements that authorities file to support criminal charges are not public, and authorities have released few details about the case, including how the victims died.
Authorities have said Flack was friends with Stout, and that White was Stout's roommate, and Bailey was Stout's girlfriend.
Prosecutors are expected to call about 40 witnesses for the preliminary hearing, including law enforcement officials and relatives of the victims.
Flack, who is being represented by Ron Evans, chief of the Kansas Death Penalty Defense Unit, is also charged with criminal possession of a firearm. He cannot legally have a firearm because he spent four years in prison on a 2005 conviction for second-degree murder, before being paroled in 2009.
Franklin County Judge Thomas H. Sachse will decide after the hearing if prosecutors have enough evidence to warrant a trial. Sachse was also expected to rule Tuesday before the hearing on a request from prosecutors to introduce as evidence statements Flack made to investigators after the killings. The defense has opposed that motion, which was filed under seal.
The charging documents show prosecutors intend to seek a so-called Hard 50 sentence for Flack if he's convicted in the deaths of Stout and White. The Hard 50 means Flack, who's being held on $10 million bond, wouldn't be eligible for parole for 50 years.
The capital murder charge in the deaths of Kaylie Bailey and her daughter could mean the death penalty for Flack. But prosecutors haven't said yet if they'll seek the death penalty. Prosecutors don't have to announce that intention until an arraignment, which will come sometime after the preliminary hearing. No one has been executed in Kansas since 1965.