Kansas City, MO – Yesterday evening, U.S. Marshals, Kansas City and
Independence Police apprehended a Tucson, Ariz. double homicide suspect.
Michael D. Leday, 28, is alleged to have killed Patrick Balbastro, 32, and
Cindy Burnett, 46, as well as critically injuring Balbastro’s girlfriend
with Balbastro's vehicle. This tragic event took place on New Year's Day
2014 near the 2200 block of East Sunland Vista in Tucson.
Mr. Balbastro was acting as a Good Samaritan and stopped to assist Burnett
during an assault on her by Leday. It is alleged Leday took possession of
Mr. Balbastro's vehicle and ran over the victims. Burnett worked as a
prosecutor for the Tohono O'odom Nation and is survived by her two sons.
Tucson Police Department turned the fugitive investigative effort to the
Arizona WANTED Violent Offender Task Force led by the U.S. Marshals Service.
The task force consisting of Tucson Police, U.S. Marshals and many other
local partners throughout Arizona immediately pursued the Leday with
investigative information placing him in the Kansas City area. U.S. Marshals
in Kansas City and their local partners led the chase in Kansas City.
Yesterday evening at approximately 8:30 p.m., U.S. Marshal and law
enforcement partners in Kansas City established surveillance and a perimeter
near the Crown Lodge Hotel in Kansas City. While conducting the surveillance
a male subject positively identified by law enforcement officers as Leday
was seen walking with a female subject later identified as Jessica Terrel,
Leday’s girlfriend. Law enforcement attempted to apprehend Leday as he was
walking to the hotel when Leday became suspicious and fled on foot. After an
intense thirty minute foot pursuit through heavily wooded areas and creek
beds, Leday was apprehended without incident. Approximately 40 law
enforcement personnel consisting of U.S. Marshals and Kansas City Police
Department personnel to include: Tactical Squads, K-9 handlers and their
K-9s and air support were utilized in Leday's apprehension. According to
deputies, Leday did not alter his appearance while maintaining his fugitive
Deputies later learned that Leday had fled Tucson via bus bound for Kansas
City the day after the assault. Leday was later reunited with his girlfriend
Jessica Terrel after she left Tucson on the thirteenth, headed for Kansas
City on a bus. Terrel was arrested for fleeing and failure to obey lawful
orders by Kansas City police officers. Leday was transported to a local
detention center pending a court appearance in Kansas City for extradition
U.S. Marshal Alfred Lomax from Kansas City stated, "The critical
relationships which exist between the U.S. Marshals Service, Kansas City and
Independence Police Departments and other local partners have been very
successful in all of our efforts to combat violent crime. This arrest is
another example of the effectiveness of those partnerships. Fugitives will
seek no refuge in our district due to the great work by our partners in
Kansas City and the surrounding region."
The Kansas City Fugitive Task Force is based in Kansas City, Mo., and
includes members of the U.S. Marshals Service, Kansas City Missouri Police
Department, Independence Missouri Police Department and other federal law
enforcement agencies. The task force objectives are to seek out and arrest
fugitives charged with violent crimes, drug offenses, sex offenders and
other felonies. Nationally the United States Marshals Service fugitive
programs are carried out with local law enforcement in 94 district offices,
85 local fugitive task forces, 7 regional task forces, as well as a growing
network of offices in foreign countries.
information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at
America’s Oldest Federal Law