The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

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August 25, 2013

Affidavit: Girl was raped, strangled

LAMAR, Mo. — Adriaunna Horton’s body showed signs of sexual assault and an autopsy determined that she died of strangulation, according to a probable-cause affidavit released via Twitter by the Barton County prosecutor.

The affidavit states that Bobby D. Bourne Jr., who stands charged with the kidnapping, rape and murder of the 12-year-old girl, initially denied having snatched her Aug. 19 from the park in Golden City when he was stopped in the town and arrested a little more than two hours after her disappearance.

Bourne, 34, of Lockwood, eventually admitted having picked her up and directed investigators to the site in neighboring Dade County where her body was recovered two days later, the affidavit states.

The former friend and co-worker of Adriaunna’s father, James Horton, told investigators that he drove the girl to a vacant home in Golden City to question her as to the whereabouts of her father. The affidavit does not state whether he told them why he wanted to know where James Horton was.

Bourne told them that Adriaunna fell as she tried to run away from him and died as a result of the fall, according to the affidavit. But an autopsy conducted in Springfield on Thursday found evidence that she had been strangled, the document states. It does not attest to whether the strangulation was manual or if a ligature was used.

Investigators had declined to reveal the cause of death or the state of the body before release of the affidavit, although the Dade County coroner, who was at the scene, told the Globe that the girl’s body was clothed and that there had been a cursory attempt to cover her up with limbs, bark and brush. The affidavit does not cite what evidence of sexual assault investigators have found.

Associate Circuit Judge Charles Curless took the unusual step of ordering the court record in the case sealed with the filing of the kidnapping charge against Bourne on Tuesday. The seal was not lifted until late Friday afternoon when Prosecutor Steven Kaderly filed rape and murder charges. But by then the Barton County Courthouse had closed for the weekend, and the affidavit could not be obtained.

Kaderly subsequently decided to release the document over the weekend via Twitter.

The wife of the suspect, Brandy L. Bourne, 33, acknowledged to the Globe on Friday that there had been antagonism between her husband and the girl’s father. She said that she and Horton had worked together to finish a home-repair job while Bobby Bourne was in jail for several months late last year and early this year.

When he got out of jail, according to his wife, he became convinced that Horton had taken some of his tools and a compressor. She said her husband ordered her and her four daughters to stop seeing Horton and his daughters, and that they had gone along with his wishes.

Since Bobby Bourne’s arrest, she has been struggling to come to grips with the allegations he is facing, she said. As the evidence mounted against him this past week, she had come to a decision to seek a divorce, she said.

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In an effort to curb prostitution, St. Louis police are targeting, and perhaps humiliating, the "johns" who use the services. Postcards mailed to the homes of those charged with trying to pick up prostitutes will offer a reminder about spreading sexually transmitted diseases, along with listing the court date. Do you think this is a good approach?

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