The murder of Tom Clements, the former director of adult institutions for the Missouri Department of Corrections, has taken several bizarre and violent twists since Daily RFT wrote about it yesterday.
Clements, who, after over 30 years with the MCD, took the top slot at the Colorado Department of Corrections, was shot and killed at his home in Monument, Colorado, after he answered the door.
Authorities now believe the man who rang the doorbell was Evan Spencer Ebel, a 28-year-old parolee, who led Texas police on a high-speed chase that ended in a hail of bullets yesterday afternoon. Ebel was just pronounced dead after spending the night brain dead and on life support.
It also now appears that Clements may not have been Ebel's only victim, nor was Ebel necessarily working alone.
Our sister paper Westword has a comprehensive breakdown of events, but here's the gist:
In a seemingly unrelated homicide, a Domino's Pizza driver named Nathan Leon was killed in Denver while out on a delivery on Sunday afternoon. Police now conjecture that Ebel murdered Leon for his uniform, using it as a way to lure Clements to his front door.
After shooting Clements in the chest, Ebel took off in his late model Cadillac for Texas, where a sheriff's deputy pulled him over on a routine stop. Ebel shot the deputy three times, striking him twice in a bulletproof vest, then led cops on a high-speed chase before crashing into a semi truck. Ebel emerged from the totaled Cadillac still shooting, until a bullet caught him in the head. He's just been declared dead.
Here's some video footage of the aftermath of the shootout:
Inside Ebel's car, police found a Domino's jacket.
Most bizarre of all is the theory that Ebel was a member of a prison white-supremacy gang call the 211 Crew, and that Clements' murder was some kind of hit on the gang's behalf. It's not clear how solid a theory that is at this time -- the Denver Post quotes an unnamed Colorado corrections worker and says the prisons there have been locked down.
This is a wildly different theory than the one offered immediately after Clements' murder, that it had to do with his decision to deny extradition to a Saudi prisoner.
Head on over to Westword for the latest breaking developments on this story. There's sure to be lots more to come.