August 24, 2006

Karr booked into Colorado jail

By Dan Whitcomb

BOULDER, Colo. (Reuters) - After a week of speculation,
skepticism and bizarre revelations, teacher John Mark Karr
arrived in Colorado on Thursday, where the probe into his
possible involvement in the murder of child beauty queen
JonBenet Ramsey was described as "in its very early stages."

Karr, 41, who was arrested in Thailand last week, was flown
from Los Angeles to Colorado, driven to a Boulder jail in a van
with darkened windows and booked into custody.

Karr, who has said he loved the girl and was with her on
the night she died, is wanted in Boulder on five counts of
murder, kidnapping and sexual assault on a minor. He has
claimed JonBenet's death was an accident.

He has not formally been charged. Boulder County Sheriff
Joe Pelle told reporters at the jail on Thursday, "We
anticipate he will go to court on Monday."

Ramsey, 6, was found strangled and with a fractured skull
in the basement of her Boulder home on December 26, 1996, in an
unsolved case that has fascinated Americans for years.

Boulder prosecutors have given no details of any evidence
against Karr, fueling doubts over the strength of their case.

In court papers opposing media requests to keep their
evidence under seal, prosecutor William F. Nagel wrote that
their investigation of Karr was "in its very early stages."

Nagel said releasing details about their evidence could
taint the extensive interviews they need to conduct.

Details emerged on Thursday of Karr's short-lived first
marriage in 1984 to a 13-year-old girl, Quientana Ray.

In excerpts of a TV interview given to the syndicated
program "The Dr. Keith Ablow Show," Ray said Karr was
controlling and possessive.

"I never got to take a shower by myself at all. If I did
want things my way, like alone, in anything he would get in a
rage," Ray said. She also said Karr asked her to smile in a way
that made her look younger and she believed he may have drugged

Ray left Karr after nine months of the marriage. He later
married a 16-year-old, with whom he had three sons before their
divorce in 2001.

California investigators said on Wednesday they told
Colorado authorities about Karr's fascination with JonBenet
Ramsey's murder in 2001 during a probe of the teacher.

But Sonoma County detective Lt. Dave Edmonds said police
"never uncovered any 'confession' statements, overt murder
evidence or other indications Karr possessed secret knowledge
that only the murderer of JonBenet Ramsey would know."

Karr was ultimately charged with possessing child
pornography but fled before his trial.

Karr was held briefly in Los Angeles, where he arrived from
Thailand, for an extradition hearing that was uncontested on

(Additional reporting by Jill Serjeant in Los Angeles)