Three charged with murder of 4-year-old girl after 13 year inves - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Three charged with murder of 4-year-old girl after 13 year investigation

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Tony Lear. Source: Daviess County Detention Center Tony Lear. Source: Daviess County Detention Center
Virginia Whitfield. Source: Ohio County Detention Center Virginia Whitfield. Source: Ohio County Detention Center
Bobby Napier. Source: KY Department of Corrections Bobby Napier. Source: KY Department of Corrections
KENTUCKY (WFIE) -

Kentucky State Police has now charged three people with the murder of 4-year-old Autumn Michelle Raymond.  

State Police say that Autumn Michelle Raymond died on October 4, 1999, from injuries sustained in an arson fire at her residence on Tanner Lane in Beaver Dam, which occurred in September of that year.

On Wednesday, October 17, 2012, arrested 47-year-old Virginia Whitfield and 53-year-old Tony Lear. At a later date of October 29, state police arrested 38-year-old Bobby Napier on murder and arson charges.

Whitfield was arrested without incident at her Greenville residence. Lear, who was already lodged on unrelated charges at the Daviess County Detention Center in Owensboro, was served the grand jury indictment warrant. 

"Detectives worked this case diligently, but it led them down some dead end roads. Detective Smith did a fabulous job and opened the avenues he needed to. At least for anything, brings a little closure to some the family members," KSP Trooper Corey King.

Both Virginia Whitfield and Tony Lear were charged with one count of Murder; one count of Arson 1st degree and two counts of Assault 1st degree. All charges are felonies.

Whitfield is being held in the Ohio County Detention Center and Lear at the Daviess County Detention Center.

Virginia Whitfield was the mother of Autumn Raymond. Tony Lear was an acquaintance of the family.

State Police say two other children in the residence managed to escape the fire; however, they suffered from smoke inhalation. Whitfield and Lear were charged with assault 1st due to their injuries.

The investigation is continuing by the Kentucky State Police and additional arrests are likely in this case.  

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