Cops Sought Confession in Levy Case Via Fake Penpal

Police Used an Alias to Write to Suspect

Thursday, Oct 21, 2010  |  Updated 4:21 PM EDT
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Cops Sought Confession in Levy Case Via Fake Penpal

AP

An arrest warrant was issued Tuesday in the Chandra Levy murder case for Ingmar Guandique, who investigators say has been a person of interest in the case since 2002 and will be charged with first-degree murder upon his transfer from a California federal prison to the District.

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A judge denied a request to dismiss the Chandra Levy murder trial over letters written to lure a confession out of the accused killer.

Police tried to get a confession out of Ingmar Guandique by establishing a fake pen pal relationship with him in prison. The letters were written in 2004 and 2005 under the pseudonym Maria Lopez.

Defense attorneys learned of the letters this week and called the move unethical. They asked a judge to dismiss the case by noting Guandique had invoked his right to remain silent.

Prosecutors said there was nothing wrong with the pen pal ruse.

The 2001 disappearance of Levy, a Washington intern, became a national headline when she was romantically linked to then-Rep. Gary Condit (D-Calif.).

Guandique's trial starts Monday. He faces murder and kidnapping charges in relation to Levy's death.
 

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