Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Arraignment Set For Cookeville Murder Suspect

A March 23rd arraignment date has been set for a Cookeville woman, who has now been indicted in the death of a woman on Buck Mountain Road this year. Authorities say 21-year-old Kari Diane Speck is accused of participating in the crime with the man already charged in the case, 31-year-old Steven Dwayne Baker. Both are now charged with first degree murder, felony murder, aggravated robbery, arson, and tampering with evidence. Police say the two killed 55-year-old Jennifer Jo Smith by stabbing her with a knife and a screwdriver. They then burned her house to cover up the crime. Baker was arrested a few days later, but further investigation revealed that Speck was also involved. She's was in jail on drug charges after being arrested for manufacturing meth. She remains there today under a $500,000 bond. Authorities say Baker and Speck were next door neighbors to the victim.