ANACONDA, Mont. - The Anaconda-Deer Lodge Law Enforcement Agency and the Division of Criminal Investigation at the Montana Department of Justice are investigating the apparent homicide of a 3-year-old boy.
Police searched all day Tuesday at the crime scene for any sort of evidence.
Police arrested 39-year-old Jeremy Cramer Monday night on disorderly conduct charges at a convenience store near Anaconda. We're told a clerk witnessed a man trying to clean blood off his clothes and body. When police arrived, they found Cramer in the men's bathroom.
According to Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Attorney Ben Krakowka, "When the officers located him there, his pants were not on at the time, the officers instructed him to put his pants on and he declined."
Police discovered Cramer left his home in Lacey, Wash., with his 3-year-old son, Broderick, Monday morning. His wife reported the two missing later that afternoon.
According to police, Cramer's wife said the couple had been arguing recently about finances and taking a trip to the east coast.
When she reported her husband and son missing, she did not think her son was in any danger, so Lacey police did not initiate an Amber Alert.
Cramer's wife told detectives her husband was not answering his phone, and according to bank records he had used a bank card at a gas station in Moses Lake, Wash.
Officers found Cramer's car about five miles southeast of Anaconda during their initial search of the area, but found no sign of Broderick.
Searchers continued looking for the boy again at dawn. A few hours later, they found the body off Mill Creek Road.
In court Tuesday, Krakowka explained they believe Cramer came to Montana solely to kill his son. Cramer was charged with deliberate homicide, and could face up to 100 years in prison.
Krakowka said the details of the case are still developing.
"This investigation is still very new," he said, "it's all come about since late yesterday and early this morning."
He said the officers are doing all they can to figure out what happened. "They can only gather information so fast."
Police wrapped up their search around 6:30 Tuesday evening.
The following is a news release from the State Department of Justice:
"The Anaconda-Deer Lodge Law Enforcement Agency and the Division of Criminal Investigation at the Montana Department of Justice are investigating the apparent homicide of a 3-year-old boy.
Anaconda-Deer Lodge Law Enforcement officers were summoned to a local convenience store around 10:30pm yesterday after a clerk reported seeing an adult male attempting to wash blood off of his body and clothes in the restroom. A subsequent investigation by Anaconda-Deer Lodge Law Enforcement determined that the male had left with his 3-year-old son from Lacey, Washington, likely as part of a custodial dispute.
The Anaconda-Deer Lodge Law Enforcement Agency located the suspect's vehicle 5 miles southeast of town on Montana Secondary Highway 569, but the 3-year-old was not found at the time. At daybreak today, authorities renewed their search and eventually located the boy's body.
At the request of Anaconda-Deer Lodge Chief Tim Barkell, agents with the Division of Criminal Investigation at the Montana Department of Justice are assisting with the investigation.
39-year-old Jeremy Brent Cramer of Lacey, Washington, is currently in custody on unrelated misdemeanor charges. Following an initial investigation and review of the case by the Deer Lodge County Attorney's Office, additional charges may be filed related to the death of the boy."
The following information is from the Lacey Police Department:
On July 8, 2013 the Lacey Police Department was contacted by a 31 year old female resident. The female reported that her husband had left the home with their 3-year-old son. The female indicated that her husband was not answering cell phone calls or text messages. She reported that his fuel card was used in Moses Lake, Washington earlier in the day.