Fundamental steps in the investigation into John Mark Karr’s possible involvement in the murder of JonBenet Ramsey didn’t begin until after his arrest, reports the Denver Post. Though the Boulder County district attorney had enough evidence to get a judge to order Karr’s arrest in Thailand on a first-degree murder count, it was only after the warrant was issued that investigators started asking questions experts say would form the bedrock of a successful homicide prosecution. For example, it wasn’t until Wednesday morning, after Karr was in Thai custody, that a prosecutor called the Alabama school district where Karr once taught, to seek anything in Karr’s handwriting for comparison to the ransom note allegedly left by JonBenet’s killer.
District Attorney Mary Lacy’s spokeswoman said public safety and fear of flight generally drive decisions on when to arrest someone. Former Denver prosecutor Craig Silverman raised questions. “You must conclude either Mary Lacy has solid, conclusive evidence or this is massive prosecutorial incompetence,” he said. The last time Colorado Bureau of Investigation criminologists processed any evidence in the case was in June 2005.