1. Archive

Suspect described killing prostitute

An Arizona man who made several late-night telephone calls to detectives to talk about the slaying of a prostitute will be returned to Florida soon to face murder charges.

Bradley Brent Knox told detectives that he "lost it" and choked Barbara Jean Faulkner after she bit him during oral sex, according to court documents released Friday.

He carried her body to the bedroom of his trailer on Eighth Avenue N, where he had sex with her corpse before he fell asleep, records show. He left her on the bed for 1{ days before stuffing her body into a white laundry bag and dumping it near a trash bin across the alley from his trailer.

Records show that investigators matched samples of his red hair to evidence found in the laundry bag, on a blanket inside the bag and on the body.

The investigation into the October 1995 slaying had stalled, detectives said, until December when Knox called St. Petersburg police from Indiana. He said his brother had killed the woman because she had not adequately performed a sex act, records show.

As the investigation evolved, detectives cleared the brother and turned their attention to Knox, who sold his mobile home in Indiana and moved last month to Mesa, Arizona. He was walking his dachshund on Wednesday afternoon when police arrested him.

Knox told investigators that he met Faulkner, 33, and took her back to his mobile home after agreeing to exchange money and food for sex.

The arrest this week vindicates another man implicated in the slaying by a mysterious telephone call three days after the body was found. A woman told police dispatchers she was walking her dog when she saw a heavy-set man in a station wagon near a trash bin. The woman gave police the license tag, which detectives traced to Kenneth Weaver, who was serving probation on a child molestation charge.

Weaver said Friday he noticed he was being followed but did not know why until he received a package of his own work records in the mail. His former employer had mailed them, asking him to give the records to a sheriff's detective. Weaver called the Sheriff's Office and learned the detective worked in the homicide unit.

One afternoon when he was leaving the diner where he works as a grill cook, Weaver was arrested on a charge of violating his probation. A waitress at the restaurant where he previously worked had claimed he hit her.

Cindy Cummings, the St. Petersburg police detective investigating the Faulkner slaying, had talked to Weaver's probation officer and arranged for him to be charged with the violation. Weaver spent seven months in the Pinellas County Jail until he was acquitted of the battery charge.

He never was charged with murder, but he was questioned at length. The carpet from his mother's station wagon also was seized by police. Though three people told police he had not left his mother's house the weekend of the Faulkner slaying, investigators told him that he could have gotten them to lie for him and that his psychological profile described him as a manipulator.

"We've been angry for a long time about all this," Weaver said. "They haven't come by and apologized at all."