Police: We stopped a potential serial killer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City police say they have stopped a serial killer, as they believe the man who confessed to killing two women would’ve killed again had he not been caught. Kansas City police are talking with other police departments to see if they can link 27-year-old Derek Richardson to other attacks.

Over the weekend, Clay County prosecutors charged Richardson of Kansas City, Mo., with two counts of first- degree murder. Neighbors said he’s married with a wife and child.

Prosecutors say he admitted to strangling two women who worked as prostitutes, 40-year-old Tamara Sparks and 23-year-old Nicoleone Reed.

Police say Richardson killed Sparks back in October of 2011. They say he picked her up on The Paseo, took her back to his duplex on Northeast 41st Street near Chouteau Trafficway, and strangled her during a sex act.

Investigators say he then poured bleach over her body to destroy the evidence and dumped her body off the side of the road at 120th and North Eastern. But he left his size 11 Croc canvas shoe near her body. DNA evidence from that shoe would eventually help them link her death to Richardson.

But it wasn’t until they found the body of Reed in August of 2012 in rural Kearney that they realized the two deaths might be related. After going public with the case earlier this month, a tipster called police and said Richardson admitted to killing the two women. Police said during interviews, Richardson admitted to the deaths.

“I’m glad he got caught not knowing that he would’ve tried something on somebody else,” siad Patricia Blackburn, neighbor.

Investigators say Richardson admitted to being obsessed with serial killers and they are now talking with officials in Caldwell County to see if he attacked a woman there.
His bond is set at $2 million. His first court date has not yet been set.

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