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Bothell's Lake Pleasant RV Park
February 5, 1997 would have been Steve Ver Woert's 44th birthday, but he didn't make it to work on time that day at his job at a cellular phone company in Redmond, Wash., home to software giant Microsoft and many other high-tech firms. When the usually reliable Ver Woert still hadn't made it to work by midday, a co-worker was sent to find out why. When she arrived at Ver Woert's fifth-wheel-type trailer in nearby Bothell's Lake Pleasant RV Park, she found blood just outside the front door and called the Bothell police.
by Gary Boynton
Patrol Officers Lawson and Seuberlich responded to the call and entered the stylish trailer through its unlocked front door. After passing through the kitchen, they found Ver Woert's body lying facedown in a pool of blood in the living room. They checked to make sure that he was dead, then carefully left the trailer, so as not to disturb any possible evidence, before calling in to report what they had found.
Bothell Police Sergeant D.C. Nielsen arrived at the scene shortly. Paramedics soon joined him. They confirmed that the victim, who appeared to have been stabbed in the back and then to have had his throat cut, was indeed dead.
Two Bothell detectives, Ed Hopkins and Denise Langford, were next to arrive, followed by Det. Olsen, who would process the crime scene along with a team from the Washington State Patrol Crime Lab. Dan Christman, a blood-spatter specialist from the Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office, and Dr. Eric Kiesel, the medical examiner, also came to examine the body.
The investigators noted that an exercise bike had been knocked over near the body and several boxes appeared to have been thrown around, both indicating a possible struggle. A Bible lay open on a nearby table.