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Two men charged with '95 murder

Additional evidence leads police to prisoner, Idaho man

BARSTOW • Two men — one who was already in prison for murder and another who was living in Idaho — were arrested in a 1995 double murder that’s gone unsolved for 17 years.

On July 2, 1995, Barstow Police began investigating the disappearance of Joseph Riley and Mark Adamson. Recent re-investigation has uncovered additional evidence needed to obtain arrest warrants and charge two men with their murder, according to a police press release.

James Franklin, 41, is currently serving a life sentence at the Centinela State Prison near El Centro for a different homicide and will be charged with the murders of Adamson and Riley, police said.

Christian Bunty, 40, had been residing in Sandpoint, Idaho.

On Monday, Barstow Police Detectives Keith Libby and Sergeant Andy Espinoza Sr. traveled to Sandpoint, Idaho and, with assistance of Idaho State Police Region 1 Investigators, located and arrested Bunty, also charging him with the murders of Riley and Adamson, police said.

He is currently being held in the Bonner County Jail in Idaho on $1 million bail.

Barstow Police Department detectives began follow-up investigation when information surfaced that Riley and Adamson had been murdered as a result of a drug deal and buried in the desert, and that Bunty and Franklin were potential suspects in the murder.

The investigation is continuing and anyone with any information about this investigation is asked to call Libby at (760) 255-5134. Callers who wish to remain anonymous may call the WeTip hotline at (800) 78-CRIME.


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