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Police: Bloody palm print linked suspect to Arkadelphia killings

Posted: December 10, 2012 at 2:50 p.m.
Updated: December 10, 2012 at 3:37 p.m.

An Arkadelphia Police Department unit stands guard Monday at a house where a man and his two young stepdaughters were slain Thursday night.

— A bloody palm print at the crime scene linked an Arkadelphia man to the murders of a man and his two young stepdaughters in their home Thursday night, documents released Monday revealed.

The probable cause affidavit filed in the capital murder case against 19-year-old Riakos Lizana was released shortly after his first court hearing in Arkadelphia.

Lizana's arrest came Saturday night — two days after Bobby Jean Galbraith, 40, Adiele Crutchfield, 6, and Marley Crutchfield, 4, were found dead Thursday night at 1032 S. 11th St.

Two of the bodies were found after Galbraith's wife returned to the home, the affidavit states. Responding authorities later discovered the second young girl dead and a 6-month-old girl who was unharmed.

The affidavit indicates both of the girls' bodies were found in a bedroom and that at least one of them was under a bed.

Investigators on scene also discovered a "patent palm print that was deposited in a substance consistent with blood." It was reportedly on the interior of the children's bedroom door.

Police say they received a tip later that Lizana was a suspect. He was taken into custody and a print examiner at the state Crime Laboratory verified the bloody print matched his, the affidavit said.

Lizana spoke only once during the brief first appearance before Circuit Judge Robert McCallum, during which he was ordered held without bail pending the filing of formal charges.

The affidavit did not explicitly address the motive for the crime, though McCallum said during the hearing that authorities intend to charge him with residential burglary and three counts of capital murder.

Lizana, wearing an orange jail jumpsuit and with his hands shackled in front of him, was escorted into the courtroom by a pair of state troopers and other law enforcement officers. He didn't answer reporters' questions as he left and spoke during the hearing only to say "no sir" when the judge asked if he could afford a lawyer.

McCallum then declared Lizana indigent and appointed the public defender's office to represent him.

The judge also set a Jan. 8 arraignment date.


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photo

Officers escort 19-year-old Riakos Lizana at his initial hearing in Arkadelphia Monday afternoon. (By: Gavin Lesnick)

Lizana was arrested about 9:30 p.m. Saturday in Arkadelphia on a capital-murder warrant. Police said the arrest occurred without incident at a local apartment complex.

The home on Monday remained surrounded by crime scene tape with an Arkadelphia Police Department officer standing guard in a patrol vehicle parked outside.

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