816 North

Teen accused of Clay County murder will remain in juvenile custody

Updated: 2014-01-10T01:45:00Z

By GLENN E. RICE

The Kansas City Star

A 16-year-old accused in the slaying of a Liberty man will remain in juvenile custody, a Clay County judge ordered Thursday.

The youth faces charges of first-degree murder, felony kidnapping, robbery and three counts of armed criminal action in the attack on 58-year-old Mark Thomas, who was found dead last weekend in a restroom at Smithville Lake. A hearing to determine whether the youth will face adult criminal charges will be Feb. 6.

The teen appeared during the brief hearing along with his mother and his attorney, Eric Vernon. The youth did not speak. Vernon declined to comment afterward.

Relatives of Thomas, including his wife, Irma Denise Thomas, also attended the hearing. They left immediately afterward and did not speak to reporters.

Thomas, a Liberty city employee and grandfather, offered to drive two acquaintances of a family member to a Kansas City mobile home park late last Friday. The two allegedly forced Thomas to pull over before they robbed, stabbed, tortured and severely beat Thomas, who bled to death.

Police arrested Zachary M. Lisle, 20, and the 16-year-old boy last Saturday as they tried to escape from under a mobile home in the 8800 block of Northeast 107th Terrace, the address where Thomas was supposed to drop off his passengers.

Lisle has been charged with six felonies, including first-degree murder, kidnapping and robbery.

Police found Lisle with $556 and blood staining his clothes, shoes and hands, court records said.

To reach Glenn E. Rice, call 816-234-4341 or send email to grice@kcstar.com.

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