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Investigator in BTK serial murder case to speak April 16

By Philip Hadley
University News Service
April 2, 2008

Larry J. Thomas

Larry J. Thomas, the lead investigator in the 2004 BTK serial murder investigation in Wichita, Kan., will give a public lecture about the investigation, at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 16, at Texas State University-San Marcos.

The lecture, free and open to the public, will be held in the University Performing Arts Center on Moore Street, on the west side of campus. A map and driving directions are available at http://www.maps.txstate.edu/driving_maps/upacc_driving.html.

Thomas, assistant director of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, headed the investigation that led to the apprehension of Dennis Rader, a Wichita city worker who pleaded guilty to 10 killings between 1974 and 1991. Rader gave himself the nickname BTK, which stands for “Bind, Torture, Kill.” He received multiple life sentences because Kansas did not have the death penalty at the time the murders were committed.

Thomas, who has more than 20 years of professional law enforcement experience, received a commendation from the Kansas House of Representatives for resolving the BTK case.  He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police College.  He is adjunct professor in the Criminal Justice Department at Washburn University.  He has taught throughout the United States on various aspects of law enforcement, specializing in interview and interrogation, serial crimes, homicide, and unsolved death investigations.

The lecture, sponsored by the Forensic Anthropology Center at Texas State (FACTS), is expected to draw interest from students and faculty at Texas State and other universities in Central Texas, as well as from campus and local law enforcement officials.

“This is the first of what we hope will become a series of lectures that showcase the interesting things we do in the Forensic Anthropology Center,” said FACTS Director Jerry Melbye.

For more information, contact Melbye at (512) 245-2472 or via email at dr4n6@txstate.edu.