Facing 235 years in prison and a $10,000 fine on each count if convicted, Kevin L. Hampton, 43, of Terre Haute, was in Vigo County Superior Court Division 3 yesterday afternoon to hear the charges read by Judge David R. Bolk for the murders of Tanette "Toni" Dickison, 18, a former Brazil resident living in Terre Haute, Cassie Harris, 48, of Terre Haute, and Dianna Lehman, 18, of Terre Haute.
Officials from the Clay County Prosecutor's Office and the Clay County Sheriff's Department were on hand as Hampton was charged with one count each of murder for the manual strangulation of Dickison and Harris, and one count each of murder, felony murder, rape and criminal deviant conduct in the ligature strangulation and rape of Lehman.
Although officials from both Clay and Vigo Counties have stated that details of the ongoing investigation will not be discussed, new information made available through the release of probable cause affidavits in each of the cases range from gruesome to bizarre.
Details from the probable cause affidavit from the investigation into Dianna Lehman's murder revealed that the woman suffered a gruesome sexual attack and was strangled with a pair of blue jeans in her own bedroom at approximately 3 a.m. on May 19, 2000.
The probable cause affidavit in the Tanette Dickison case revealed that an unidentified piece of food found inside a Taco Bell wrapper within 15 feet of the location of her body contained a large enough DNA sample to link a known associate of Hampton's, Timothy D. Bailey, to the crime scene. Officials believe that Bailey helped dispose of Dickison's body in a private pond on the south side of CR 600 N on Nov. 30, 2004.
Harris' partially decomposed body was found at the northern edge of the Alcan property, just south of Hasselburger Road in Vigo County, but an autopsy report showed that she had died two months prior to being discovered. It is unclear whether or not Harris' body was dumped at the precise location where found because it may have floated some distance down Otter Creek before its discovery on Feb. 10, 2005.
The three probable cause affidavits also confirmed that Hampton was using several aliases, including Calvin Hampton and Calvin Spillars.
Hampton, who wants an early trial date, is scheduled to return to court at 10 a.m. Thursday morning to set the trial schedule. Represented by an assigned Public Defender, Hampton can at that time present a written motion to the court concerning his right to request an early trial date depending upon the court schedule.
Officials from the Clay County Prosecutor's Office, Sheriff's Dept. and the Coroner's Office will continue to work with Vigo County Prosecutor's Office and law enforcement personnel as this investigation continues over the next few months in preparation for the trial. Officials are urging members of the public with any information concerning these crimes which has not already been disclosed to contact law enforcement.