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For Immediate Release

Contact:
January 15, 2014 Daniel Leyva, Deputy U.S. Marshal - Tucson (520) 209-0935
Tucson's New Year's Day Double Homicide Suspect Nabbed in Kansas City

Tucson, AZ - Yesterday evening, U.S. Marshals and Kansas City Police apprehended double homicide suspect, Michael Dwayne Leday. 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 who 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 multiple times. 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 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. Marshals and their law enforcement partners established surveillance and a perimeter near the Crown Lodge Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri. 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 Terrell, 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: SWAT personnel, K-9 handlers and their K-9s, air support and narcotic street investigative units were utilized in Leday's apprehension. According to deputies, Leday did not alter his appearance while maintaining his fugitive status.

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 Terrell after she left Tucson on the thirteenth, headed for Kansas City on a bus. Terrell was arrested for fleeing and failure to obey lawful orders by Kansas City police officers. Leday was transported to the local detention center pending a court appearance in Kansas City for extradition proceedings.

“This is an outstanding example of federal and local law enforcement agencies working together, sharing intelligence, and resources to get a dangerous criminal off the streets,” stated David P. Gonzales, U.S. Marshal for the District of Arizona.

The federal, state, and local agencies which comprise the Arizona WANTED Violent Offender Task Force in Tucson include: U.S. Marshals Service; Immigration and Customs Enforcement; Arizona Department of Public Safety; Pima County Adult Probation Office; Arizona Department of Corrections; Tucson Police Department; U.S. Border Patrol; Pima County Sheriff's Department; and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The United States Marshals Service is the nation's oldest federal law enforcement agency. Annually, U.S. Marshals arrest more than 50 percent of all federal fugitives and serve more federal warrants than all other federal agencies combined.

Please Note: This case is currently being investigated by the Tucson Police Department. All inquiries can be directed to: Sergeant Chris Widmer (PIO) at (520) 791-4852 - chris.widmer@tucsonaz.gov

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at http://www.usmarshals.gov.

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America’s Oldest Federal Law Enforcement Agency