Crime

Couple accused in 2007 shooting death

Letti Strait
Letti Strait

A Platte County grand jury has indicted a couple in the 2007 shooting death of the woman’s former husband.

Letti Strait, 54 and her current husband, Terry Strait, 54, each faces a first-degree murder charge in the slaying of Charles V. Cammisano, whose body was found Sept. 1, 2007, by a relative in the foyer of the ranch-style house at 4810 N.W. High Drive, not far from Riverside’s water tower.

Cammisano had been shot several times, and his car was missing. A salesman at a Northland auto dealership, he also had worked at a dealership in Merriam. His vehicle later was recovered in downtown Kansas City.

A 17-member metro squad investigated almost 100 leads over several days before disbanding, leaving Riverside police to continue investigating.

Weeks after the shooting, police arrested the couple at a Platte County home near Missouri 45 and Blair Road after a standoff. The two had barricaded themselves inside the home after officers tried to serve a search warrant related to the Cammisano shooting. They later were released without being charged.

Authorities arrested the Straits on Friday, the same day the grand jury issued its indictment, said Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd.

Because probable cause statements are not released with indictments, it is unclear what evidence investigators uncovered.

Letti Strait is being held in the Platte County Jail on $1 million bond. Terry Strait was arrested in Kansas and is being held there pending extradition.

If convicted of first-degree murder, they would face life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In April 2011, Letti Strait was convicted of attempting to evade state income taxes and filing false tax returns. Authorities said Strait falsely claimed her children as dependents on her 2008 income tax return. However, the children had been in state custody since Sept. 4, 2007, and had not lived with her.

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

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