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5-14-14

Coach at R-3 remains in
Clay County jail

Linked to, but not charged
with, a possible homicide

by Valerie Verkamp
Landmark reporter

A man who authorities believe is connected to a bizarre crime scene in Clay County remains in custody.

Authorities say Marcus Simms, 30, who served as a non-faculty assistant freshman boys' basketball coach at Platte County High School, left his Northland apartment naked, bloody, and distraught the morning of April 30. His girlfriend was found dead at the scene.

Police have identified the woman as 31-year old Michelle Boldrige, Kansas City. Her cause of death has not been released by authorities.

Police say her body has been sent to the Jackson County's Medical Examiner's Office.

No one has been charged in the death of Boldrige. Simms has been referred to by police as a person of interest in a homicide investigation.

The Clay County Prosecutor's Office charged Simms with tampering with a motor vehicle. He is currently being held on a $500,000 bond.

According to court documents, Simms drove 11 miles from the apartment complex located in the 7900 block of North Hickory Street to the Liberty Public School Bus Barn at 801 Kent Street at 7:30 a.m.

Authorities say Simms roamed the parking lot naked and encountered a bus driver. The female driver observed blood on Simms’ left hand and a cell phone in his right hand. When she told him to leave the premises, Simms said, “You don't understand, someone just killed my girlfriend.”

Running on his toes, Simms tried to enter a building located on the grounds of the school bus barn. Unable to gain access into the building, Simms jumped up and down several times.

Court documents allege Simms located a silver 2003 Chrysler Town and Country minivan unlocked with the keys on the floorboard in the front parking lot of the bus barn. The owner of the vehicle told authorities she left keys in the vehicle while she drove a school bus so her daughter could drive the minivan to Maple Woods Community College.

Police say Simms left the area in the minivan, leaving behind his green 2005 Ford Focus that he parked near the Probation and Parole Office in Liberty. Authorities say the steering column and gear shifter were covered with dried blood.

Minutes later, police in Parkville responded to a car collision involving a single vehicle along Highway 152 near Hwy. 45. Upon arrival, police said Simms was outside of the vehicle and distraught. He was taken to a nearby hospital where he was later taken into custody.

In a formal statement released by the Platte County R-3 School District, the district acknowledges Simms’ connection to the school district. Simms worked as an assistant freshman boys' basketball coach at Platte County High School from October of 2011 to February of this year.