Warrants reveal scratches on Brad Cooper

September 3, 2008 4:44:29 PM PDT
Search warrants show that a North Carolina father was questioned about scratches and red marks on his neck shortly after his wife was reported missing.

One of the reasons a judge allowed Cary Police to search Nancy and Brad's home is because a detective noticed Brad had "small red marks or scratches" on the back of his neck the morning his wife disappeared.

When investigators searched the house, they confiscated 33 items. One of those items was a pink nail, presumably a fingernail.

"There's always some possibility if there's a physical struggle and a fingernail is broken that small pieces of skin from whoever the person was struggling with could be found," Attorney Karl Knudsen said.

Long-time defense attorney and former prosecutor Knudsen noted according to the search warrants, "Brad Cooper did not provide an explanation" for the marks on his neck.

The warrants also indicate investigators became suspicious when they noticed cleaning supplies on a bathroom counter.

Brad allegedly told police he did "extensive cleaning" of the house on the morning of his wife's disappearance.

"That apparently was not part of his normal activities to do that kind of thing," Knudsen said.

Nancy's friends told police it was out of character for Brad to clean house. Brad, according to the warrants, said he cleaned because his wife recently returned from a trip and complained he messed up the house.

Investigators say he also cleaned the truck of his car but not the passenger compartment.

"That would generally tend to be the opposite of the way most people would do things," Knudsen said. "They would start with the inside of the car and if and when they got around to doing the trunk they would."

Brad apparently told police he spilled gas in the trunk , but investigators noticed no odor.

The warrants not investigators also found hair in the trunk lid and in a wheel well, as well as under the front bumper.

Police say there was something else unusual about Brad's story that his wife went running and never returned home.

They were told Nancy always carried her keys and cell phone when she ran. According to the warrants, her keys and cell phone were found in the Cooper home.

Howard Kurtz and Seth Blum, attorneys for Brad, released a statement Tuesday afternoon. In the statement, the attorneys said if the police "had substantial, credible evidence pointed to Brad Cooper, he would be in custody."

The attorneys also urge anyone with information about the murder of Nancy Cooper to contact authorities.


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