An arrest has been made for a September murder in southwest Spokane County that was witnessed by the victim’s 8-year-old daughter.
A tip led to the identification of 22-year-old John A. Radavich, who was arrested Thursday afternoon at an apartment complex at 12900 E. Mansfield Ave. in Spokane Valley by Sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Marshals. Radavich has been charged with first-degree murder.
The body of 35-year-old Robert Tester, nephew of Montana Sen. Jon Tester, was found Sept. 6 in his home in the 16100 block of South Keeney Road near Spangle. Deputies found a bloody scene in the home where Tester was apparently stabbed and beaten with a wood-splitting maul.
Tester’s daughter told deputies she witnessed some of the crime but could not identify the killer, who was dressed in black and had most of his face covered. The intruder reportedly told the girl to stay in her bedroom during the assault, court documents state.
An investigation revealed that Tester had assaulted his 17-year-old girlfriend the day before he was killed, according to the Sheriff’s Office. The teen told Radavich, who was her ex-boyfriend, about the assault.
In late December, a man approached detectives with a recorded phone call where Radavich could be heard saying he killed Tester because of the assault, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Radavich appears to have a limited criminal history. He was charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia in Kootenai County in September. A trial is scheduled for February.
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