Suspect in Killing Was Out on Bond In Assault Case

SWAT team members stand by at the Mount Vernon Plaza shopping center, near where a gunman with bloodied clothes boarded a Fairfax Connector bus.
SWAT team members stand by at the Mount Vernon Plaza shopping center, near where a gunman with bloodied clothes boarded a Fairfax Connector bus. (By John Mcdonnell -- The Washington Post)
By Tom Jackman and Josh White
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, October 19, 2007

The 18-year-old Woodbridge man accused of killing a stranger in a popular Fairfax County park Wednesday was convicted two weeks ago of attacking another woman with a Taser in Culpeper but was allowed to remain out of jail until his sentencing in December.

Fairfax police have charged Kevin C. Kline with murder in the shooting of the woman in Huntley Meadows Park. Minutes after her body was discovered, police said, Kline jumped on a nearby commuter bus and, as police closed in, threatened to kill himself. He surrendered peacefully four hours later.

Police were waiting yesterday for a complete dental comparison before releasing the woman's name. She was reported to be an older woman. Investigators said Kline did not know the woman, and they do not know how the two crossed paths deep inside the park.

The woman might have been sexually assaulted after she was slain, according to details in the police affidavits filed with search warrants in Fairfax and Prince William counties. Detectives took hair and saliva samples from Kline yesterday in the Fairfax jail, where he is being held without bond.

The lawyer who represented Kline in the recent Culpeper case, Harvey Volzer, helped persuade Kline to put down a gun he was holding to his head while he sat alone on a Fairfax Connector bus Wednesday afternoon. Kline had gotten on the bus after emerging from the park, witnesses told police, and when police pulled the bus over, Kline refused to get off, setting off the hours-long standoff on Route 1 that snarled traffic, closed nearby streets and shops and kept students inside their schools for hours.

Witnesses saw a man run from Huntley Meadows and climb on the bus on Fordson Road. Police pulled the bus over as it reached Route 1 about 3 p.m. The driver and passengers fled, but Kline refused to leave. Court records state Kline spoke to a police dispatcher and "advised that he had killed a person and would go to jail for life."

Volzer said he reached Kline on his cellphone about 5:20 p.m., and "the first thing he said was, 'I'm holding a gun to my chin.' " Volzer said he repeatedly urged Kline to calm down, throw his gun out the door and surrender. After 10 minutes, the call was cut off.

Soon after, Fairfax police called Volzer and said Kline wanted to meet with him. Police picked up Volzer in Lorton and rushed him to the scene. Kline stepped off the bus with his hands in the air two minutes after Volzer's arrival, the lawyer said.

"He is one of the nicest, most polite kids I have ever met," Volzer said. "It's just totally out of character for him."

Volzer praised the county's chief prosecutor and police for their handling of the incident, accomplishing Kline's safe arrest without injury to passengers on the bus.

Authorities in Culpeper charged Kline with malicious wounding, abduction and burglary for an episode on a farm in March in which he attacked a woman in her mid-50s with a Taser, Culpeper Sheriff Lee Hart said.

Hart said the woman was tending her horses on the morning of March 31 when a man wearing latex gloves assaulted her inside a barn and shot her with a Taser. The woman's Rottweiler broke loose, however, and attacked and bit the man, causing him to run away, Hart said.

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