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Police arrest man suspected of kidnapping 2-year-old

Wed., April 2, 2014, 4:49 p.m.

Suspect has history of lewd conduct

A man with a history of lewd conduct was arrested this morning after he was found with a 2-year-old boy kidnapped from his Spokane home.

Richard L. Welch, 55, was arrested in Airway Heights after a convenience store clerk called police at 4:30 a.m. when Welch showed up with the child. The clerk knew Welch and knew he didn’t have children, said Spokane Police Capt. Brad Arleth.

Police believe Welch may have stalked the boy, Arleth said.

“The family is unknown to Mr. Welch,” he said.

Welch told police he believed the child was a 7-year-old girl and he had found her wandering near Wellesley and Lincoln at 3 a.m. Court documents state that Welch drove the child to his motel room in Airway Heights, where police found sexual lubricant on his bed.

Welch was wearing women’s underwear when he was booked into the Spokane County Jail, documents state.

The boy’s parents called police at 5:20 a.m. to report their son missing from their home.

Court documents state that Welch has been a suspect in over 40 cases involving stalking, child luring, assault, indecent exposure and lewd conduct.

This story is developing and will be updated.


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