SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane County Sheriff's detectives have arrested the person allegedly responsible for chopping a man to death in front of the victim's 8-year-old daughter.
John A. Radavich was booked into the Spokane County Jail Thursday night after a friend secretly recorded Radavich's confession during a phone call.
The 8-year-old girl's family is very relieved to have have Radavich behind bars, because Radavich took a great deal of time attacking the girl's father, he also saw and spoke to the child. So, up until now, the 8-year-old's mom was worried Radavich might try to silence the only eye witness in this gruesome murder.
Even Major Crimes detectives were repulsed by the level of violence deployed in the murder.
Victim Bob Tester, the nephew of a U.S. senator, was hacked to death while his daughter witnessed part of the attack.
“You're familiar with just how traumatic that crime scene was for both the victim's daughter and quite frankly for the investigators,” Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich said to me this afternoon. “This was a very,very bloody crime scene.”
Detectives say Radavich was outraged that Tester had abused Radavich's former 17-year-old girlfriend.
Instead of calling police, Radavich allegedly took matters into his own hands and killed Tester to settle the score.
Investigators had always suspected Radavich, but didn't have the evidence they needed until Radavich confessed to a friend on the phone what really happened.
The Texas man recorded the 21-minute conversation and sent it to SCSO deputies.
“He didn't do it for any kind of gain, he did it for the right reason, and that was to make sure that somebody who had committed a very, very horrible murder was arrested,” said Sheriff Knezovich.
On Friday, Radavich appeared in Spokane District Court exactly four months after the savage attack.
The 8-year-old's mom, the wife of the murder victim, was so glad that man in Texas e-mailed detectives Radavich's alleged confession.
“Our family would really like to express our gratitude to the person who thought enough to turn this is in,” Shauna Tester said. “I just can't tell you how grateful I am to them.”
Radavich was scheduled to stand trial next month in Kootenai County on a drug charge. That case will be postponed because Radavich is now being held in the Spokane County Jail on a first-degree murder charge and a $1,000,000 bond.
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