Man arrested for assault was part of Careaga family homicide investigation

PORT ORCHARD — In the course of investigating a homicide from January 2017, Kitsap County Sheriff’s deputies collected evidence against a 38-year-old Bremerton man that alleges he accused his estranged mother of wearing “a wire” and then groped and propositioned her.

Reports used to charge Danie J. Kelly Jr. redact the name of homicide victims, but the only unsolved homicides reported during that period in Kitsap County were of four members of the blended Careaga family.

“He is one of the people we have contacted in the course of the investigation,” Kitsap County Sherriff’s Lt. Jon VanGesen said of Kelly’s connection to the Careaga investigation. “And we have contacted 200 to 300 people.”

Kelly has not been charged or named in connection to the deaths of the Careaga family, four high-profile murders that shook Kitsap County and remain unsolved.

Kelly is charged with indecent liberties, a felony, and fourth-degree assault with sexual motivation, a gross misdemeanor. He has yet to enter a plea.

The allegations were brought to the attention of the Sheriff’s Office Sept. 1, and were investigated first by a deputy. The mother reported she had been assaulted about three days before.

That deputy then contacted a detective who works on the Careaga case. She recontacted Kelly’s mother, explaining she was working on the homicide case, and contributed more detail to the assault case, according to documents.

The arrest warrant that came out of the assault case against Kelly was publicized by the Sheriff’s Office, which posted Thursday morning onto its official Facebook account Kelly’s photo and a request for help in locating him. Acting on tips, Kelly was arrested on the warrant at about noon by Bremerton Police.

During the interview with a detective, Kelly’s mother said “she was aware of the (redacted) homicides and that Danie’s name had been brought up, but she was surprised he asked if she was wearing a wire.”

Kelly’s mother said she had not seen her son in years and believed he contacted her so that they could reconcile. She told investigators she was shocked by his actions, according to court documents.

John Careaga, 43, his wife Christale Lynn Careaga, 37, and the couple’s sons in their blended family, Hunter E. Schaap, 16, and Johnathon F. Higgins, 16, were all killed in the attack, which investigators believe was not random. Christale, Hunter and Johnathon were found Jan. 28 in a house near Lake Tahuyeh in central Kitsap County. John Careaga, believed to be the target of the attack, was found in a burned truck left on a tree farm in Mason County.

© 2017 KING-TV


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