Crime

Pasco man jailed in Pendleton after murder of W. Richland woman

PENDLETON — A 24-hour manhunt for a Pasco man suspected of murdering a pregnant woman ended with his arrest Tuesday night in Oregon.

Kurtis Robert Chapman, 22, is behind bars in Pendleton on charges he killed a 19-year-old West Richland woman.

Shenay Greenough allegedly was strangled Saturday by Chapman, who has a criminal history that includes drugs, sex offenses and assault.

Franklin County Prosecutor Steve Lowe charged Chapman with second-degree murder and a $1 million warrant was issued for his arrest Tuesday afternoon.

Chapman was arrested by the Pendleton Police Department at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and booked into the Umatilla County jail, where he is awaiting an extradition hearing to return to Pasco, jail officials said.

Chapman apparently was released from the Franklin County jail just days before Greenough's death. He had been in jail since March 18 on a possession of methamphetamine charge and was sentenced on April 27 to 30 days in jail, which he already had served.

Few details were released about the slaying as Pasco police investigators continued to search Tuesday for Chapman.

Pasco officers and members of the Washington State Patrol's Crime Scene Response Team from Spokane spent most of the day collecting evidence from Chapman's home at 429 N. Waldemer Ave. in Pasco.

They were wearing white suits with hoods and gloves as they gathered evidence from the backyard of Chapman's home and emerged from a crawl space behind the house with a video camera.

Greenough's body was found at the home Monday night. Her car also was found in Pasco, in a different location, about an hour before her body was discovered, officials said.

Greenough was reported missing to West Richland police on Saturday, officials said. She was described as about nine months pregnant.

Franklin County Coroner Dan Blasdel has scheduled an autopsy Thursday afternoon.

Because of the homicide investigation, Pasco police Capt. Jim Raymond would say only that Chapman and the victim were "acquaintances."

On Chapman's Myspace page, however, a woman named Shenay posted several comments telling him she loved him, missed him and was incomplete without him.

Greenough's Myspace page is private, but it does show that she last logged onto the social networking site on Friday and her mood was listed as "?happy."

Greenough's stepsister, Joy Porter of West Virginia, said Greenough had been staying with her boyfriend. Porter received a message from relatives saying Greenough's boyfriend had beaten her to death.

"She had a hard life, but she was a good girl," Porter said through tears.

Greenough was a former student at River's Edge High School in Richland, which she attended for a couple years before withdrawing in December 2008, said Principal Dan Chubb.

"Our teachers saw her as a very bright young lady," he said.

River's Edge is a small alternative high school in the Richland School District. Word of her death was just reaching campus late Tuesday afternoon. Chubb said school staff had been notified that Greenough was killed, and district counselors were available if they needed to talk.

One of Greenough's longtime friends posted the following Tweet on Tuesday: "R.I.P. Shenay Greenough & baby. You will be dearly missed. May God Be With Them. So sad."

The friend, who asked that her name not be used, later said in a text message to the Herald: "All I have to say is she is a wonderful person. This is a horrible situation and I will pray for her. ... May God take care of her and her baby."

Chapman has an extensive criminal history that started as a juvenile, court records show.

When he was 13, he was convicted in Benton County of first-degree child molestation for inappropriately touching a 6-year-old girl.

Other convictions as a juvenile include delivering Adderall, a prescription drug for treating ADHD, possessing fireworks and being a minor in possession of alcohol.

He has a 2006 conviction in Franklin County Superior Court for failing to register as a sex offender.

Chapman also has three pending charges for third-degree driving with a suspended license in Benton County District Court, with arraignments set May 14, 21 and 28, court officials said.

He also was convicted in 2008 in Pasco Municipal Court of simple assault after a fight with a former girlfriend, who lived with him at his Waldemar Avenue home.

According to court documents, Chapman had spent the day drinking before he got into a physical fight with the girlfriend. He picked her up, threw her on the ground, then threw her into the car, documents said.

He pleaded guilty and was ordered to spend a day in jail. Chapman was then charged three times with violating an order that he have no contact with his ex-girlfriend, court records show.

Last year, Chapman's ex-girlfriend had a son with another man, and this past January, a Benton County judge ruled that the child could not have any contact with Chapman.

In court documents, the child's maternal grandmother said she was worried about her grandson because Chapman has a bad temper.

She didn't want to speak publicly Tuesday about Chapman until he was arrested because she said she was afraid for her daughter and grandson.

When Chapman was identified as the homicide suspect, the boy's paternal grandfather, Kevin Carpenter, said he too was worried about his grandson.

"I told everyone in the family that that guy is capable of doing something bad," Carpenter said. "This is a bad thing."

-- Reporters Kristin M. Kraemer and Sara Schilling contributed to this report.

-- Paula Horton: 509-582-1556; phorton@tricityherald.com

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