By Martin J. Kidston
The Hill County Attorneys Office filed formal charges on Thursday against two men and a teen-age girl in the September shooting deaths of Kristi Walker and Kevin Caplette.
Hill County Prosecutor David Rice and Deputy County Prosecutor Aileen Miller filed a motion with the 12th Judicial Court detailing the circumstances that took place in the early morning of Sept. 16 the morning Walker, 30, and Caplette, 30, were gunned down.
Prosecutors said they have established enough probable cause to charge Reid Danell, 18, Jacob Spang, 18, and Francine Spang, 15, with various charges related to the killings.
Danell is charged with two counts of deliberate homicide, two counts of intimidation and one count felony theft. The charges carry the possibility of death or life in prison. Jacob Spang is charged with deliberate homicide under the felony murder rule, intimidation by accountability and felony theft. Francine Spang will face a juvenile proceeding for similar charges.
The suspects will be arraigned on Oct. 20.
Police reports state that on the morning of Sept. 16, an all-night party was taking place at 1231 6th Street in Havre, the home of Walker. Several people told police that Walker had been contacting various people throughout the morning asking to borrow money. She told a friend that she owed $800.
The report continues that while Walker was attempting to collect money, at approximately 3 a.m., Danell and Jacob Spang went to the Spang residence where they woke Jacobs sister, Francine, for the party.
Jacobs other sister, Sherry Spang, told police she heard her brother say Kristis being a cheap b tonight, before Jacob, Francine and Danell left the home.
The trio then drove to Walkers residence where they were overheard by a guest, identified in the report as DF, talking about what it would be like to shoot someone.
After the three were arrested on Sept. 17, Danell admitted to shooting both Caplette and Walker sometime after Walker returned from trying to get more money, around 4:30 a.m.
Danell told police that when Walker returned, he pointed what prosecutors say was a 9mm rifle at Caplette and told Caplette to give him money and the keys to a car. When Caplette refused, Danell shot him while Walker watched.
Danell then followed Walker to the bedroom and told her to give him the money while holding the rifle on her. Walker gave Danell the money she had collected, then Danell shot her.
The three suspects confessed to their part of the crime. They agreed that after Danell shot the victims they stole one of the cars left at the residence and drove into Beaver Creek Park looking to discard the weapon.
Once in the park, Jacob Spang wrapped what he believed was the ammo clip in his shirt and threw it out the window. Later, police retrieved the shirt and found that Spang had mistaken a remote control for the ammo clip. The clip was eventually found under the seat of the stolen vehicle. The gun was found in the trunk and efforts by the suspects to wipe down the car with cleaning fluid to cover evidence failed.
After leaving the stolen vehicle on Rocky Boys Indian Reservation, Danell and Spang were taken to Great Falls by a friend, where they went to a mall and bought new cloths, discarding the bloody garments in a nearby dumpster.
They were arrested the following night at the Highwood Motel. Francine Spang turned herself over to Havre police with the presence of her mother.
According to an Associated Press story, Danells attorney, Robert Peterson of Havre, said hes not sure how Danell will plead. Spangs attorney, Carl White of Havre, said his client will plead innocent.
Hill County Attorney David Rice said he hasnt decided if he will seek the death penalty for the pair.
Tom Sheehy of Big Sandy, Francine Spangs attorney, also said she will plead innocent.