Jesse Paul Speer's alleged kidnapping victim saw photos of other naked girls before assault
Update:Yesterday afternoon, Jesse Paul Speer, a photographer with Colorado ties who's accused of kidnapping and assaulting an eleven-year-old Cody, Wyoming, girl, waived his right to fight extradition during a brief court hearing in Montana yesterday. Meanwhile, new information about the crime is accompanied by the just-released fugitive complaint, which details the charges against Speer. See the documents and more below.
On Monday, October 8, as we've detailed in our previous coverage, on view below in its entirety, the girl in question was with friends in Cody when a man in an SUV pulled up and asked for help finding a lost puppy. She climbed into the vehicle with him, then disappeared, prompting the issuance of an Amber Alert. That evening, a group of hunters unaware of the incident spotted the girl walking in a remote area and picked her up, at which point she revealed that she'd been abducted.
In the beginning, investigators considered the possibility that the Wyoming kidnapping might have been related to the disappearance of Jessica Ridgeway, a ten-year-old Westminster girl whose body was found in an open-space area on Wednesday. At this time, however, there's no known connection between the crimes, even though Speer has lived and worked in Colorado at various times in recent years.
Speer in a Montana courtroom yesterday.
The fugitive complaint against Speer, filed in Montana's 18th District Court in Gallatin County, lists the accusations as kidnapping, aggravated assault and use of a firearm in violation of the laws of the State of Wyoming. It also contends that "the defendant has fled from justice." The accompanying warrant from the Fifth Judicial District in Park County, Wyoming, elaborates on the kidnapping charge, maintaining that Speer "did unlawfully remove another from the vicinity where she was at the time of the removal, with the intent to facilitate the commission of a felony...and/or did unlawfully remove another from the vicinity where she was at the time of removal, with the intent to inflict bodily injury on or to terrorize the victim or another."
Meanwhile, the Billings Gazette features a chilling depiction of the crime, based on information gleaned in part from yesterday's news conference, featuring Cody police chief Perry Rockvam.
After the girl climbed into the vehicle, the paper reports, Speer allegedly drove her to a nearby church and bound her hands with rope, all the while insisting that he wasn't going to hurt her.
He's said to have contradicted this claim when she didn't keep her head down to his satisfaction, striking her in the back of the skull with his pistol. Still, she managed to look up often enough to see and recall the areas through which they traveled, and was able to share the details with investigators.
The man subsequently drove to a rural area on Cody's outskirts, at which point he assaulted the girl, police maintain. The Gazette references charging documents that say the victim saw photos of naked young girls in the vehicle before a cloth bag was placed over her head.
A short time later, the man allegedly found a stopping place, untied the girl, walked her away from the car and told her to count to fifty as he split.
Not far away, Speer is said to have ditched the cargo carrier on the top of the vehicle, presumably to change its appearance. However, the carrier was found by a logger and became an important clue that eventually helped lead to his capture in the Montana community of Belgrade.
Look below to see a silent video of Speer in court, followed by the fugitive complaint.
Continue for our previous coverage, including photos and video.