Shawnee County killers Joshua Kaiser, Kenneth Cook considered for release

Kenneth Cook, left, and Joshua Kaiser are being considered for parole. (Photos via Kansas Department of Corrections)

Joshua Kaiser and Kenneth Cook, both convicted of murders committed in Shawnee County, are among Kansas prison inmates being considered for parole.

 

The Kansas Prisoner Review Board will accept public comments about the possible paroles of 24 eligible inmates, including Kaiser and Cook, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Feb. 24 in the Topeka Municipal Court chambers at 214 S.E. 8th.

The board will also receive comments from 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 27 in City Hall at Kansas City, Kan. It heard comments July 15 at the Police and Courts Building at Derby in Sedgwick County.

In addition, comments may be emailed to the board at prb@doc.ks.gov. A list of the eligible inmates can be found at http://cjon.co/2lrxTfJ.

Those include Cook. 61, an Ellsworth Correctional Facility inmate serving time for the 1992 second-degree murder in Topeka of Charles Duty.

Authorities said Cook fatally shot the 33-year-old Duty with a black powder pistol in Topeka, then pulled his teeth, cut off his tattoos, attached his body to a metal bar and submerged it in the Wakarusa River. Evidence indicated Duty was killed in his sleep and his prescription drugs were stolen.

Cook was found guilty in 1994 of first-degree murder and given a “Hard 40” prison sentence, leaving him ineligible for parole for 40 years.

The Kansas Supreme Court ordered Cook resentenced. It concluded Duty’s slaying didn’t rise to the level of a particularly heinous, atrocious or cruel murder — which was required for the Hard 40 sentence — as Duty was dead when his tattoos were cut off and his teeth pulled to hinder identification of the body.

Cook was resentenced in 1996 to life imprisonment, leaving him eligible for parole after 15 years in prison.

Cook’s first-degree murder conviction was then overturned by a federal appeals court in 2003.

He was convicted at his retrial of second-degree murder and sentenced to 15 years to life.

Cook was paroled from prison in 2015, then returned last year for violating conditions of his parole.

Kaiser, 41, is a a Hutchinson Correctional Facility inmate serving time for first-degree murder, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated robbery and a weapons violation, all committed in 1993 in Shawnee County, and for aggravated battery, committed in 1998 while an inmate in Reno County.

Kaiser and Jason Schaeffer, 40, an inmate at Ellsworth Correctional Facility, were convicted of crimes linked to the killing of 33-year-old Tim Riley.

Authorities said Riley was robbed of his car in the early-morning hours outside his Topeka home, forced at gunpoint into the trunk and driven to the area of S.W. 85th and Jordan Road, where he was ordered out of the trunk and fatally shot.

Other parole-eligible inmates serving time for crimes committed in Shawnee and surrounding counties are:

Shawnee County — Derrick Fitzgerald Nash, convicted of five counts of aggravated indecent solicitation of a child, all committed in Shawnee County in 2012.

Brown County — Jason D. Thompson, convicted of two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child, both committed in Brown County in 2012.

Douglas County — William Snavely III, convicted of aggravated sodomy and indecent liberties with a child, both committed in Douglas County in 1992.

Riley County — Nordell F. Glover, convicted of rape and aggravated kidnapping, both committed in Riley County in 1986.

 

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