Police have charged 36-year-old Kevin Wayne Dunlap of Hopkinsville with three counts of capital murder, kidnapping, rape, attempted murder, burglary and tampering with physical evidence.
Dunlap, wearing an orange jumpsuit and shackles, kept his head bowed for most of the Friday hearing. His public defender, James Gibson, had no comment after the hearing. Dunlap still has not entered a plea and remains in jail without bond.
Kentucky police detective Jerry Jones, the lead investigator in the case, spoke at a preliminary hearing during which District Judge James R. Redd III sent the case to a grand jury. He said the mother identified Jones as the attacker from a photo.
Jones recounted the mother's statement to police while on the stand. About a week before the attack, a man driving a DirectTV truck stopped at the house to ask for directions and inquire about the home being for sale, he said.
On Oct. 15, the same man carrying a black handgun and zipties approached the woman while she was doing yard work. She said her assailant was wearing a blue polo, jeans and white Reebok tennis shoes.
"He said he was from DirectTV and he needed to get some things out of the house and nobody needed to get hurt," Jones said. At that time the children were not home. The man gave the woman a choice on whether he would rape her or a daughter
, Jones said, and the mother was raped before her three children came home.
Jones said the mother, who was stabbed, suffered burns and has had surgery, was unable to recall many of the details which happened next, and likely did not witness the slayings of her children.
A 17-year-old girl, 14 year-old girl and 5-year-old boy were bound with white zipties and gagged. Jones said they all had stab and slash wounds.
The home was then set on fire, Jones said. A neighbor called 911 shortly before 5 p.m. to report the blaze. Police found the mother inside the pool.
Police found the children in separate rooms in the house, Jones said.
"Obviously they were killed during the course of this incident and left their bodies to burn and destroy any evidence in there," Jones said.
The Associated Press has previously identified the mother, but is no longer naming her because authorities now say she was sexually assaulted. The AP generally does not identify victims of sexual assault.
Police arrested Dunlap three days later.
A man who stopped by the house during the attack told police a champagne-colored SUV was parked in the driveway and gave a partial license plate. The witness knocked on the door, but heard nothing and there was no answer. Police linked the car to Dunlap.
Police found what appeared to be dried blood on the door handle and seat belt in Dunlap's vehicle, Jones said. In Dunlap's home, they discovered white Reebok tennis shoes with what appeared to be blood and ash on the sole, as well as two guns, zipties, rope and four blue DirectTV polos, authorities said.
Dunlap works for Bruister & Associates Inc. which subcontracts work for DirectTV. He told police during questioning Saturday the only time he was in the Roaring Spring community was when he was installing cable at a home nearby the family that was attacked, Jones said.
More than 25 state police officers and sheriffs deputies, along with 20 reporters were in the courtroom packed to maximum capacity. Family of the victims, including the fathers of two of the children, and a few neighbors sat solemnly. Others were forced to stay outside of the crowded courtroom.