OSBI Seeks FBI Insight In Pastor’s Death

| August 29, 2009

ANADARKO, Okla. — State investigators are asking the FBI for help in solving the killing of a pastor inside her church in Anadarko.

Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Jessica Brown said Friday they want the federal agency’s help in analyzing the death of 61-year-old Rev. Carol Daniels.

Brown says the FBI has experts in fields like behavioral science that could help them find the killer.

Daniels was found slain on Sunday in the Worthy Temple Christ Holy Sanctified Church in Anadarko.

Many people, including some who didn’t know her, came to a memorial vigil on Friday evening in Anadarko.

Her funeral is set for Monday in Oklahoma City.

New Details Known

The autopsy report obtained by Eyewitness News 5 on Friday indicated that Daniels was stabbed several times after she died.

"The major trauma appears to be the throat," said Oklahoma City University criminal science professor Howard Kurtz. "When you get right up with someone like that and you cut them with a knife, it usually requires a great deal of anger and a great deal of rage. I think there was a horrific struggle."

He said the FBI will have some special expertise that may help investigators.

"The FBI collects information on unusual murders, ones where there’s a staging or preponderance of stab wounds," he said.

He said the killer’s decision to move the body says something about the slaying.

"They weren’t panicking. They didn’t accidentally kill someone in a rage and then run away," Kurtz said. He also said the killer probably staged the body in hopes of sending a message but he didn’t know what that message might be.

Investigators would not describe what position her body was in or where it was found.

Investigators are also examining a surveillance tape from a nearby convenience store that shows Daniels’ car parked in front of the church.

"We are looking at it, examining it in a forensic basis," said OSBI spokeswoman Jessica Brown. "What it does is confirm the timeline that she arrived about 10 a.m. and her body was found around noon."

People in Anadarko were coming together to help investigators figure out who is responsible for killing the Oklahoma City resident.

People also left behind flowers and prayed for Daniels’ family. Many asked why anyone would kill the 61-year-old mother.

"There is speculation as to what went on and a lot of questions and a lot of concerns," said Pastor Brian Ball.

Investigators said Daniels was supposed to meet with former church bishop Silky Wilson and his wife. When they showed up at 11:30 a.m., they found the door to the church locked. When police went inside, they found Daniels’ body.

Retired Bishop Describes Finding Body

"It was very unusual for the door to be locked like that," said Wilson. "That was very unusual, and for us not to get anyone to come to the door."

He said he saw Daniels’ car but didn’t understand why she didn’t answer his knocks on the door, especially right before a service.

"No one would come to the door and we pecked on the windows and drove around the building and tooted the horn on the car," he said. "We got no response."

He said they finally went to get help from police. An officer made the gruesome discovery.

"I didn’t know what to think," Wilson said. "I was expecting to see Carol at any time come to the door. I was expecting her at any time to pop up."

He said he knew Daniels for 31 years and can’t believe she is gone.

"I am in a tailspin," he said. "I don’t know which direction to turn or where to go. I don’t know anything. I don’t know whether to get mad or cry. I don’t know what to say."

He said Daniels was always willing to help lost souls find salvation.

"I believe she is in heaven," he said.

Anadarko Concerns

A woman who owns a house near the church said the person who rents it noticed that someone had broken into the cellar.

"I just backed up, shut the door and notified authorities," said renter Katherine Wiley.

"I am very shaken up," said owner Alicia Theis. "I just found out that something else is going on here."

Daniels’ son, Alvin Daniels, said his mother never expressed concerns about her safety at the church.

"She was very cautious for the most part," he said. "She would usually leave the door open in case people came in to worship."

Many people in Anadarko said that even if they can’t understand why Daniels died, they’re determined to help investigators bring justice for Carol’s family.

"The church was a sanctuary where you could go and be safe," said Anadarko resident James Britt. "Can you do that any more?"

Some people in Anadarko worry that the killer may be targeting pastors in general. Police held a meeting earlier in the week to warn people to be careful.

"There must be something that they feel we’re in danger to call a meeting," said pastor Curtis Koscheski.

"They’ve been spoken with about security measures, maybe having video cameras or door greeters or security officers in hallways during services," said Dwaine Miller of the Anadarko Police Department.

Officers said they’re just being careful and don’t necessarily think a particular church is being targeted. Koscheski said he’s doing whatever he can to keep his congregation safe.

"I’m just being careful about when people come in the door," he said.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation at 800-522-8017.



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Category: Church Security

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