The story of a woman who worked as a prostitute before murdering her husband has reemerged in an otherwise low-level theft case in Spokane County Superior Court.
Curtis A. Johnson, 69, is scheduled for trial next month on one count of first-degree identity theft after police say he cashed two checks with signatures forged to look like murder victim Dale R. Stark’s.
Stark, 48, was gunned down in
On Dec. 28, 2007, less than a month after the murder, someone transferred $9,500 from Dale Stark’s home equity line into a credit union account Shellye Stark took control of after her husband’s murder.
Johnson reportedly cashed two checks from that credit union account – one for $3,000, which the account already had in it; the other for $9,500 that had been transferred in, prosecution documents allege.
A handwriting expert with the Washington State Patrol Crime Lab said Johnson signed Stark’s name to the checks, according to court documents.
The murder case took an unusual twist in April when Spokane police arrested Stark's boyfriend, Brian L. Moore, on accusations that helped plan the murder, then concocted a sordid tale of spousal abuse to try to dupe authorties into thinking the killing was in self defense.
But a judge ruled last summer that material from a private investigators hired by Moore, 43, that had been included in Stark’s defense lawyer’s files couldn’t be used to support first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder charges against Moore.
In the mean time, Moore is at the Santa Ana Jail in California, where he was just granted permission to wear reading glasses in his cell, according to court documents filed Jan. 27.
Moore's public defenders filed the request on Jan. 21 after a doctor recommended hewear glasses.
He faces two federal charges of possession of an unregistered firearm in connection with a rifle and firearm silencer on a pistol seized from a his warehouse in Orange County, Calif.
His trial is set for May.