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Third person arrested in Silver Peak slaying

GOLDFIELD — A third suspect has been arrested in the July 2013 murder of a Silver Peak man after he allegedly lied to police about circumstances leading up to the victim’s disappearance.

Raymond Vogel, 49, was charged by the Esmeralda County District Attorney’s office last week with one count of accessory to murder with use of a deadly weapon, a category C felony.

According to the criminal complaint, filed Jan. 8, Vogel allegedly lied to police during the course of their investigation about circumstances leading up to Jason Taaffe, 33, and Coleman Ward, 42, leaving with victim Charles Kinkel on the night of July 24, 2013.

“Raymond Vogel did willfully and unlawfully harbor, conceal, and/or aid Coleman K. Ward and/or Jason L. Taaffe, with the intent that he/they may avoid and escape from arrest, trial, conviction or punishment, having knowledge that said person(s) had committed the crime of murder upon the person of Charles H. Kinkel III, and were liable to arrest, by lying to law enforcement about the circumstances surrounding the parties leaving the house, providing Coleman K. Ward and/or Jason L. Taaffe, with an alibi,” the complaint states.

Taaffe and Ward were taken into custody last month after Taaffe allegedly admitted to shooting and killing Kinkel. According to a declaration of arrest in the case, Taaffe told an investigator he and Ward had conspired to “take Charles hunting,” after he said he saw Kinkel attempting to molest a 10-year-old girl.

“Jason said he took a pistol and 7.62 Mosin Nagant rifle with Coleman and Charles in Coleman’s pickup and went into the hills south of Silver Peak to a place he was unfamiliar with that had three old buildings and a covered well,” the arrest report states. “Jason told me (the investigator) that he walked around for a couple of hours with Coleman urging him to just do it until Jason shot Charlie in the head.”

Kinkel was first reported missing after his wife, Trayce, called her husband on the morning of July 25 to wake him up for work and received no answer. After he failed to show up for work that day the woman called the Esmeralda County Sheriff’s Office to notify them of his disappearance.

Almost five months later, Kinkel’s body was discovered on Dec. 15, 2013 with a gunshot wound to the head by two people collecting firewood near Silver Peak.

Although Taaffe allegedly told police he and Ward had conspired to kill Kinkel, Ward denied any involvement in Kinkel’s disappearance when questioned by police.

As of Thursday morning Vogel, Taaffe and Ward remained in police custody. A hearing in the case today was expected to be rescheduled for a later date due to an attorney conflict.

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