Archive for Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Kline plans legal action against BTK

October 25, 2005

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— Atty. Gen. Phill Kline is preparing to take legal action against BTK killer Dennis Rader, but wasn't disclosing his plans Monday.

The attorney general's office would acknowledge only that a BTK-related lawsuit would be filed and that Kline would discuss it during a news conference at 10 a.m. today at the Sedgwick County Courthouse in Wichita. Kline didn't respond to a message left on his cell phone Monday.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Kevin O'Connor, who worked on the BTK case, said Kline hadn't told him what legal action he was planning. Sen. Phil Journey, R-Haysville, said he was invited to attend the news conference but wasn't told what it's about.

Journey, a criminal defense attorney in Wichita, said Kline might try somehow to block Rader from profiting from the sale of memorabilia, because the state doesn't have a law preventing that. The state does have a "Son of Sam" law that prohibits Rader from profiting from the telling of his story.

Rader, who gave himself the nickname of BTK, for "Bind, Torture, Kill," was arrested in February after he resumed communicating with authorities after years of silence. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to multiple life sentences in August for 10 killings between 1974 and 1991.

A former ordinance compliance officer in the Wichita suburb of Park City, Rader in court recounted the murders in chilling detail. Kansas didn't have a death penalty law at the time of the killings.

Rader faces lawsuits from his victims' families and won the right in August to have a role in deciding the disposition of some of his writings, photographs and other personal items.

In September, Carolyn Hook, the daughter of one of the victims, won a $250,000 default judgment against him.

Rader's ex-wife, Paula Rader, is fighting to keep the money she stands to make from selling the couple's former home. The families' attorneys are opposing her efforts, saying the house sold for $90,000 - $30,000 more than it was worth - because of BTK's notoriety.

Rader is serving his sentence at the El Dorado Correctional Facility, and a judge recommended Wednesday that Rader receive treatment as a sexual offender while in prison.

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