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Bodies of 'In Cold Blood' killers exhumed

Dec. 18, 2012 at 5:08 PM

KANSAS CITY, Kan., Dec. 18 (UPI) -- The remains of two killers who were the subject of the book "In Cold Blood" were exhumed in Kansas so officials can collect DNA for testing.

The Kansas City Star reported a search warrant was executed Tuesday by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation to exhume the bodies of Perry Smith and Richard Hickock. The men were executed in 1965 for the Nov. 15, 1959, murders of Herb, Bonnie, Nancy and Kenyon Clutter in Holcomb, Kan.

DNA collected from the killers' remains will be used to determine whether Smith and Hickock were involved in the killings of the Walker family in Florida, also in 1959. Cliff and Christine Walker and their two children, ages 2 and 3, were killed on their ranch near Sarasota on the same day in December 1959 that the "In Cold Blood" killers checked out of a nearly motel, the newspaper said.

No one was arrested or charged in the Walker slayings.

Christine was raped and shot and law enforcement hoped to compare a recovered DNA sample with DNA from semen found in her underwear.

Author Truman Capote's best-selling book "In Cold Blood," the story of the notorious Clutter killings and investigation, has been the basis of three movies, a television miniseries and an opera.

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