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Letter claims beating death of WWII vet was unintentional

By Jeff Humphrey, KXLY4 Reporter , jeffhu@kxly.com
Published On: Oct 03 2013 08:50:05 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 03 2013 08:51:30 PM CDT
Murder suspect Kenan Adams-Kinard
SPOKANE, Wash. -

A letter, reportedly written by one of two suspects in the beating death of WWII veteran Delbert Belton, claims his death was unintentional.

A copy of the confession, written by 16-year-old murder suspect Kenan Adams-Kinard, was released to KXLY in response to a public records request. The handwritten note was found in a basement where Adams-Kinard was found hiding five days after the attack on Belton.

Kinard and his young friends who hid him in the basement apartment were well aware of the community's outrage about Shorty Belton's death. The letter tries to show the murder was unintentional. Even though the letter isn't  addressed to anyone, the suspect's friends told detectives it was written for the benefit of Kinard's mother.

It read, "I called Shorty. He told me to meet him at the Ice Arena. It was the first time I had ever met him."

Even though the writer represents themselves to be Kinard, the penmanship appears to be that of a young lady. A teen told detectives she helped Kinard author the letter.

The note details Kinard's actions in an alleged drug deal gone bad. The writer states Shorty "screamed for help so I socked him two more times. I took his wallet and another ounce of crack from his pocket. He was unconscious so I made sure he was breathing and took off."

The letter is signed vertically in the left hand margin with a signature that matches Kinard's signature on a juvenile court document.

Spokane Police continue to assert that their detectives have found no evidence Belton was a drug dealer.

The letter, intended to minimize Kinard's alleged involvement in Belton's murder, is now one of the strongest pieces of physical evidence against him.

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