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Suspect captured in deaths of Kansas mom, children

November 27, 2013
Associated Press

PARSONS, Kan. (AP) — A man has been arrested in the deaths of a southeast Kansas woman and her three young children, the Kansas Attorney General's office said.

The Kansas Attorney General's office said in a statement that the suspect was taken into custody in Independence on Tuesday evening, but provided no details of his apprehension.

The man, who has not been formally charged, was sought in the deaths of 29-year-old Cami Umbarger, of Parsons, and her three children, ages 9, 6, and 4. The attorney general's office has not provided any details about how the family was killed, where their bodies were found or whether the mother and her children knew the suspect.

But Umbarger's sister, Beth Umbarger of Wichita, told The Wichita Eagle Tuesday that she had heard Cami Umbarger "went out a few times" with the suspect. But she said the 29-year-old single mother broke up with him after he "started acting pretty scary toward" her.

"She'd been trying to stay away from him and he just kept coming back and going back," Beth Umbarger said. "She was just hoping that he would leave her alone ... and she would be able to move past it."

Police learned Umbarger was missing after co-workers called police Monday when she didn't show up for work, facility administrator Joanna Wilson said. Umbarger was a licensed practical nurse who worked at the Good Samaritan Society, a nursing home in Parsons, a town of about 10,500 residents southeast of Wichita.

Parsons schools have called in extra counselors to talk to students and staff about the deaths, district superintendent Shelly Martin said. She said school officials received word of the deaths Monday evening.

"Obviously everyone is deeply saddened and shocked by the news of the death of our students and their mother. In a town the size of Parsons, this affects everyone."

A candlelight vigil is planned for 7 p.m. Wednesday in Parsons. Funeral services are scheduled for Monday in Thayer for Cami Umbarger, and her children, 9 year-old-Hollie Betts, 6-year-old Jaxon Betts and 4-year-old Averie Betts.



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