Saturday, October 21, 2006

FBI Seeks Killer of Seattle Assistant United States Attorney, Thomas Crane Wales

"The bureau also asked for help in finding a person who mailed a curiously literate letter this January from Las Vegas. Using crisp, crime-novel prose that echoes the smart-guy style of Elmore Leonard, the writer confessed to killing Wales in a murder-for-hire deal." ---Washington Post
(10-17-06)

The FBI has a special link with information about the hit-style murder of a Seattle Assistant United States Attorney named THOMAS CRANE WALES.

Mr. Wales, who investigated white collar fraud for the United states of America, was shot on 10-11-01 with a Russian-made gun as he sat working at his computer in his Seattle home.

Who murdered this dedicated public servant? The Seattle FBI reports that they received a letter in an envelope postmarked January 23, 2006, in Las Vegas, NV, that describes the murder and purports to have been authored by Wales’ killer. The killer claims that a lady called him on the phone and asked him to shoot Mr. Wales for $xxxx. The FBI is keeping the amount of the money secret.

Here is some information from the FBI site about this crime. The site also has video of Mr. Wales and pictures of this public servant enjoying a boating trip.

VICTIM - THOMAS CRANE WALES

THE DETAILS SURROUNDING THE CRIME

On the night of October 11, 2001, at approximately 10:40 p.m., Thomas Crane Wales was killed in his home in Seattle, Washington. Wales worked for the Western District of Washington as an Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) for over 18 years, prosecuting white collar crime cases on behalf of the United States of America. The shooter stood in the backyard of AUSA Wales' home and shot him several times through a basement window as he sat at his desk typing on his computer. It has been reported that a lone male suspect was seen fleeing the scene. Wales died at a hospital the next day....

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION [From the FBI site]

Las Vegas Letter and Envelope

Information on Makarov Pistol and Replacement Barrel

Sketch of Person of Interest

Video of Thomas Wales,
Courtesy of the Thomas C. Wales Foundation

Download Free QuickTime


*************************************************
The Washington Post (10-17-06) writes:

[T]o mark the fifth anniversary of the crime, an FBI task force leader insisted last week that the case has not gone cold, and authorities released for the first time a composite sketch of a "person of some interest" who was seen wandering around Wales's neighborhood on Seattle's Queen Anne Hill before the killing.

For reasons not explained, the existence of the wandering stranger -- whose presence had been reported to police weeks before the Oct. 11, 2001, killing -- did not find its way to the FBI task force until about three years after Wales was shot.

Having failed over the past few years to find that man while keeping the hunt quiet, the FBI recently handed out a two-year-old sketch and asked for the public's help in finding a slim white man in his early 40s with black hair, tobacco-stained teeth and perhaps a ponytail.


The bureau also asked for help in finding a person who mailed a curiously literate letter this January from Las Vegas. Using crisp, crime-novel prose that echoes the smart-guy style of Elmore Leonard, the writer confessed to killing Wales in a murder-for-hire deal.

"OK, so I was broke and between jobs," the letter begins. "I got an anonymous call offering [dollar figure redacted by the FBI] to shoot the guy, so I drove to Seattle to do the job."

An FBI behavioral analyst said that while the murder scenario described in the letter was "made up," the writer is "relatively well-educated and well-read" and could be the killer or could know him. [Full text]

KOMO TV (10-11-06) reports:

[FBI] Agents don't know if the man [in the FBI sketch] had any connection to the killing. At the time, the man, who was white, was in his late 30s or early 40s, 5-foot-7 to 5-foot-10, slim, 140 to 165 pounds, with black hair and tobacco-stained teeth.

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