Affidavit: Cop confessed to ambush, killing
Posted by Muskegon Chronicle
January 14, 2008 16:34PM
Categories: Breaking News, Holland
HOLLAND -- Holland Police Officer Ken DeKleine admitted to investigators that he strangled his estranged wife to death with a nylon strap, apparently after hiding in the home until Lori DeKleine was alone, a warrant affidavit shows.
The warrant, sworn by Ottawa County sheriff's Lt. Mark Bennett, alleges he then "had contact with Mrs. DeKleine in the kitchen of the home on Calvin Avenue and affixed the strap around her neck and choked her to the point that she fell to the floor."
Read a transcript of Lt. Mark Bennett seeking an arrest warrant.
"While on the floor, he confirmed by his own admission, that Mrs. DeKleine had died," Bennett testified.
"He then placed Mrs. DeKleine in the basement of the home, and at least initially attempted to make the appearance of a suicide, and then left the residence," Bennett said.
Police found blood at the scene they believe is that of Ken DeKleine, because he was injured in the altercation with Lori DeKleine.
DeKleine told investigators his estranged wife bit him on the lip in the moments before her death, an injury substantiated by six sutures on DeKleine's lip as investigators interviewed him.
Bennett said DeKleine attacked his wife after their two teen children left the home. DeKleine showed little emotion Monday when arraigned in Holland District Court with attorney Charles Rominger by his side.
Holland District Court Judge Susan Jonas denied bond.
During the investigation, police interviewed DeKleine three times, with a confession coming on the third interrogation, the affidavit shows.
Lori DeKleine's body was discovered Thursday evening by her son. The strap was still around her neck.
The couple was going through a contentious divorce, records show.