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Slaying Suspects May Waive Extradition : 2 Seized in Vegas Were Sought in Killing of Glendale Deliveryman

December 27, 1985|PAUL FELDMAN | Times Staff Writer

A couple suspected of killing a Glendale pizza deliveryman and two other employees of the same restaurant chain in South Carolina have indicated that they will waive extradition from Las Vegas, where they were captured, Glendale police said Thursday night.

Mitchell Carlton Sims, 25, and Ruby Padgett, 20, who were arrested in the Nevada city Wednesday, are scheduled to be in a Las Vegas courtroom this afternoon for a bail hearing in connection with the slayings.

Glendale Police Lt. Rodger Simon said officers from his department interviewed the couple in the Clark County Jail in Las Vegas and were told by the pair that they would waive extradition at the hearing today.

A Las Vegas police spokesman said, however, he was unaware of any such plans. As late as Thursday afternoon, the couple had indicated to Las Vegas authorities that they would fight efforts to return them to California or South Carolina.

The bail hearing is merely a formality, because "in this case, there is no bail," Las Vegas Police Detective Arvis Harding said.

Harding added that of the two states in which the couple are wanted, "California would probably have first grabs because . . . we arrested them for the California charges."

Sims and Padgett have been charged by the Los Angeles County district attorney's office with the Dec. 10 slaying of deliveryman John Steven Harrigan, 21, whose body was discovered at the Regal Lodge in downtown Glendale.

After luring Harrigan to their room, police assert, the pair robbed and killed him and then proceeded to the Domino's outlet in Glendale, where they allegedly stole $2,000 after binding the hands and feet of two other employees.

The two are also wanted in the Dec. 3 shooting deaths of two employees at a Domino's restaurant in Hanahan, S.C., where Sims worked as a deliveryman until about two weeks before the double homicide.

Citizen's Tip

Sims and Padgett were arrested early Christmas morning at the Stevens Motel and Apartments on the north end of Las Vegas, after a tip from a citizen who recognized their photographs from police reports. Sims, authorities said, offered no resistance and did not attempt to hide his identity when police knocked on the couple's door, even though he had apparently checked into the motel Dec. 11 under an alias.

A red pickup truck stolen from Harrigan was found outside a Las Vegas casino Saturday.

If the two choose to fight extradition, local authorities will initiate formal action, which includes submitting a warrant signed by the governor, Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Thate said. He estimated that the process could take between 30 and 90 days.

In addition to the murder charge, the district attorney's office has also filed three allegations of special circumstances--torture, lying in wait and murder during a robbery--which could lead to the death penalty if the suspects are convicted of the Harrigan slaying.

In Michigan, officials of the 2,800-outlet Domino's chain praised police for the capture of the suspects and added that the company is in contact with authorities to help determine how the $100,000 reward the chain posted will be dispersed.

"We can't say enough nice things about the Glendale police, the Hanahan police, the Las Vegas police and the FBI," Domino's public relations director Ron Hingst said. "It's a big country . . . and it was kind of like a needle in the haystack."

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