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Accused Yale lab tech maintained access to campus until arrest

School officials say Raymond Clark, suspected of killing grad student Annie Le, had a working identification card but was under constant surveillance.

September 22, 2009|Associated Press

NEW HAVEN, CONN. — Even after police suspected that lab technician Raymond Clark had killed Yale University grad student Annie Le and stuffed her body behind a wall, he had unfettered access to the campus -- but was under constant surveillance, officials said Monday.

Yale spokesman Tom Conroy said the school didn't disable an identification card that gave Clark access to campus buildings until after his arrest Thursday, four days after Le was found strangled in the lab building where they both worked.

Yale referred further questions to New Haven police, who said investigators knew where Clark was at all times after Le's body was found.

Police say Clark killed Le on Sept. 8. The pharmacology grad student's body was found five days later, on what would have been her wedding day.

Conroy wouldn't say whether Clark continued to work before his arrest.

New Haven police said Monday that they didn't expect to arrest anyone else in the killing and rebutted media reports that they were considering whether Clark had an accomplice.

"I don't expect anyone [else] to be charged," Police Chief James M. Lewis said. "But I don't know where the evidence may take us."

Lewis confirmed that a car towed by police Saturday from the Cromwell, Conn., hotel where Clark was arrested belonged to his father. Clark was either driving his father's car or was in it at some point, police spokesman Joseph Avery said.

An attorney for Clark didn't return a call seeking comment Monday.

Clark was an animal lab technician, cleaning floors and mouse cages in the lab where Le conducted research. Her team experimented on mice as part of research into enzymes that could have implications for treatment of cancer, diabetes and muscular dystrophy.

A law enforcement official said on condition of anonymity that co-workers described Clark as fastidious and territorial about the mice whose cages he cleaned. Police are investigating whether that attitude might have set off a clash between Clark and Le, originally from Placerville, Calif. She was 24, as is Clark.

Le will be remembered Wednesday at a private memorial service at the temple that her fiance's family attends, said Rich Pilatsky, whose wife is the cantor at Temple Beth El in Huntington, N.Y.

Le's funeral is planned for Saturday in El Dorado Hills, Calif., said the Rev. Dennis Smith, acting as the family's spokesman.

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