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Man who killed Seattle teacher 23 years ago now accused in death of Spokane Valley girlfriend

UPDATED: Thu., Aug. 24, 2017

Darrell Cloud, center, being escorted to court in 2001. (Mike Siegel / Seattle Times)
Darrell Cloud, center, being escorted to court in 2001. (Mike Siegel / Seattle Times)

A man convicted of gunning down a Seattle middle school teacher in 1994 was arrested Tuesday in King County on a warrant charging him with killing his Spokane Valley girlfriend.

Darrell A. Cloud, 48, is being sent to Spokane County, where he will face second-degree murder charges stemming from the beating death of his girlfriend Candy Fealy.

The facts of the case trace back to April 5, 2012, when a man brought Fealy to the Deaconess Medical Center emergency room. She was unconscious with a swollen left eye, bruised chin and a number of bruises on her body.

The man put Fealy in a wheelchair, pulled a knit cap over her forehead and eyes and told a security guard that Fealy had gotten into a “wedding brawl” the prior Saturday.

Doctors rushed Fealy into emergency surgery to relieve bleeding on her brain. She also suffered several facial fractures, including a broken eye socket, according to court records.

Fealy’s mother, Judy Rickard, received a call from Darrell Cloud at about 11:30 a.m. that same day. Cloud told her that he had picked Fealy up off the floor and put her in bed the day before. He said he had tried to give her liquids but she was unresponsive.

Asked why he didn’t take her to the emergency room, Cloud told Rickard: “I don’t know,” according to court records.

When detectives called Cloud to ask about Fealy’s injuries, he immediately hung up the phone. “At this time, Candy was in critical condition,” Spokane County Sheriff’s Detective Mike Drapeau wrote.

Cloud was pulled over by a deputy that same night near his home. During an interview with detectives, Cloud said he and Fealy got into a fight at a wedding the previous Saturday in Tacoma. “He thought she struck her head on a counter during this fight,” Drapeau wrote.

Then on Tuesday, two days before she was taken to the hospital, Cloud said he and Fealy went for a drink at a tavern near Mission Avenue and Greene Street. Driving home from the bar, Cloud said Fealy saw a girl she knew near the intersection of Fiske Street and Augusta Avenue.

Fealy got out of the car and approached the woman, Cloud told detectives.

Cloud said he “saw the girl punch Candy in the jaw, hit her on the head with a roundhouse punch and Candy went down to the ground,” according to court records. “The girl then kicked Candy on the left side of her face.”

Drapeau later reviewed surveillance camera footage that showed the corner Cloud described, but could not find any indication of the fight or Cloud’s car, according to court records.

A neighbor later told Drapeau that he heard a fight coming from Cloud and Fealy’s apartment on April 3, 2012, that was “accompanied by banging and thuds that sounded like something hitting the wall,” according to court records.

About a month after Candy Fealy underwent emergency surgery at Deaconess, she awoke from her coma. She was unable to speak, but she was able to point to answers for “yes” and “no” when presented with questions.

“Do you remember who caused your brain injury?” investigators asked. Fealy pointed to “yes” then “no.” When asked if she got her injuries in a fight with a girl, she pointed to “yes.”

She indicated that Cloud did not cause her brain injury. But when asked if Cloud had hit her, she pointed to “yes.”

Fealy died on July 29, 2016. Spokane County Medical Examiner Dr. Sally Aiken determined that she died from complications from bleeding on the brain and that the manner of death was homicide.

Cloud has a murder conviction for the 1994 killing of Seattle middle school teacher Neal Summers. Cloud said the teacher had sexually abused him for a decade starting when he was 13.

On that day, Cloud waited outside the school with an assault rifle and shot Summers in the back. Cloud served nine years in prison and later was awarded a $250,000 settlement in 2005 from the Seattle School District for its failure to notice the pattern of abuse against him, according to the Seattle Times.

Spokane County Superior Court issued the new warrant for Cloud’s arrest on Aug. 15 and he was arrested Tuesday, according to King County Jail records.

Editor’s note: This story was changed on Aug. 24, 2017 to correct the spelling of Greene Street.

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