SPD arrests kidnapping suspect

Investigation into the incident is ongoing

Monique Cotton, Public Information & Communication Director, 509.363.8285

Thursday, April 3, 2014 at 6:06 p.m.

Spokane Police arrest 55-year-old Richard L. Welch for 1st Degree Kidnapping in connection to the kidnapping of a 3-year-old child.

This morning, April 2, 2014, at approximately 5:20 a.m., Spokane Police received a call from the kidnapping victim’s mother, stating that her child was missing.

At approximately 4:31 a.m., Spokane Police received a call from the Kidnapping suspect, 55-year-old Richard Welch, stating that he had located a child in the area of Wellesley and Lincoln in Spokane.

Spokane Police believe Welch took the child from the child’s home early this morning, prior to calls to police, transported the child to his apartment at the All Season’s Motel (12500 W. Sunset Hwy.) in Airway Heights, eventually took this child with him to an Airway Heights convenience store, an alert convenience store clerk expressed concern that Welch had the child with him and Welch left the child with the clerk, who called Airway Heights Police at approximately 4:36 a.m. to report the suspicious activity. Airway Heights Police responded to the convenience store and notified Spokane Police, who responded and initiated an investigation.

The child was taken to an area hospital for a medical evaluation and has been returned home safely. Welch was arrested and a search warrant was filed and executed, allowing for a search of Welch’s person.

SPD Major Crimes detectives have also executed a search warrant at his residence, 12500 W. Sunset Hwy. in Airway Heights.

This investigation is ongoing. At this time there is no indication that Welch was known to the victim or the victim’s family and this incident appears to be random.

Welch has had numerous past police contacts, including convictions for Reckless Driving, City Assault and Assault (Domestic Violence). Additionally, Welch has misdemeanor convictions for Criminal Impersonation (x2) and Indecent Exposure.

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