Student, 17, arrested in Jessica Ridgeway killing
Austin Reed Sigg, 17, was arrested this morning.
October 24th, 2012
06:50 PM ET

Student, 17, arrested in Jessica Ridgeway killing

Editor's note: A 17-year-old student was arrested Tuesday evening in this month's killing of 10-year-old Denver-area girl Jessica Ridgeway, according to police in Westminster, Colorado.

Austin R. Sigg, who lived not far from Ridgeway, will be charged as an adult in her death and in a separate, attempted abduction in May, authorities say.

[Updated at 6:50 p.m. ET] One of Ridgeway's great-grandmothers, Donna Moss of Independence, Missouri, told CNN affiliate KSHB that she wouldn't be able to look in the suspect's face "and not be judgmental."

"It's all I've got within me to not want to just burn him. And I mean burn him," Moss told KSHB on Wednesday.

"For me, my steps have to be one step at a time to forgiveness," Moss said. "Because yes, I am really angry."

[Updated at 6:15 p.m. ET] The student arrested in Ridgeway's death, 17-year-old Austin R. Sigg, will be tried as an adult, Jefferson County District Attorney Pam Russell said Wednesday.

Charges probably will be filed on Monday, Russell said. Authorities said earlier that Sigg, who was arrested Tuesday night, will face murder and kidnapping charges in death of Ridgeway, who is from Westminster in the Denver area. Sigg also will be charged with attempted kidnapping and attempted murder charges regarding allegations that he tried to abduct someone else on May 28 at Ketner Lake in Westminster.

Sigg and Ridgeway lived about one mile apart, on opposite sides of Ketner Lake, CNN affiliate KMGH reported.

Ridgeway, also from Westminster, was last seen alive by her mother as the girl left for school October 5. A body was found days later at a park just five miles from Westminster, and police identified it as Ridgeway's on October 12.

Hundreds of volunteers had searched fields and streets, posted fliers and canvassed neighborhoods since news broke of the girl's disappearance. Hundreds of local, state and federal law enforcement officers also worked the case.

Earlier Wednesday, police had said Sigg was arrested on Wednesday. They later corrected themselves, saying he'd actually been apprehended Tuesday evening.

[Updated at 2:44 p.m. ET] We can now report that the 17-year-old suspect is Austin Reed Sigg.

While CNN does not normally show the booking photo or name suspects who are juveniles, police mentioned Sigg's name and released his photograph in hopes the public could provide information related to the case.

Jessica Ridgeway, 10, was last seen by her mother.

[Updated at 2:14 p.m. ET] Jessica Ridgeway's family was told this morning that an arrest was made in the 10-year-old's death, police said.

"We hope and pray that this arrest gives them some measure of closure in dealing with this horrible loss and tragedy they have suffered,"  Westminster Police Chief Lee Birk told reporters.

Charges will officially be filed in the next couple of days, officials said.

The 17-year-old suspect was arrested on preliminary charges including two counts of first-degree murder and one count of kidnapping in the Ridgeway case. He also faces a charge of attempted murder and attempted abduction related to a May 28 kidnapping attempt near Ketner Lake.

A warrant is currently being served on the suspect's home.

The  suspect will have his first court appearance Thursday at 8 a.m.

[Updated at 1:50 p.m. ET] A 17-year-old student has been arrested in the murder of 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway, according to a Westminster, Colorado, police report.

The report says the student is charged with first degree murder and second degree kidnapping.

CNN is not naming the suspect or showing his mugshot until we can determine whether he is being charged as an adult or a juvenile.

[Posted at 1:32 p.m. ET] Police in Westminster, Colorado, arrested someone today in connection with the Jessica Ridgeway murder case.

Jessica, 10, was last seen by her mother as she left for school October 5. Her body was found last week at a park in Arvada, a Denver suburb five miles from Westminster.

"Late Tuesday evening police received a call that led them to a home near the Ketner Lake Open Space," police said in a press release.

That visit allowed police to make an arrest in the Ridgeway case, as well as another case, an attempted abduction near Ketner Lake.

That's all we know right now. Police will have a news conference at 2 p.m. ET. We'll be sure to update you as soon as we have more information.

soundoff (530 Responses)
  1. jen

    You..what? Lemme go away a while and try to figure that one out...

    October 24, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Danny

    We need to find out why our teenagers value life so little. This needs to stop. This world has become such a horrible place, we each have to remember to pass on any joy or kindness we have to make it all worth fighting for...

    October 24, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  3. randy sandberg

    My heart goes out to the parents of the little girl. My son died unexpectantly 11 years ago and the pain never leaves. They need their friends now

    October 24, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Art

    I bet his mama can tell you he was a good boy?

    October 24, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Lilyrosalie

    Kudos to the Westminister police, the FBI and everyone else involved in tracking this suspect down so quickly!

    October 24, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  6. debbie

    I don't know a thing about this guy's parents, but this rarely occurs without some forewarning. A kid across the street from me use to knock baby birds in any low lying branches from the trees and chase and beat them to death with a stick, I saw him do it from the age of 4, he graduated to cats, his parents have been told and have done nothing, look out when he gets old enough for humans. Another mom bailed her son and paid legal fines to keep him out of jail even after 14 DUIS, well suprise suprise he killed 5 people including 3 kids, I think she should take her share of the blame. Too many parents ignore what they don't want to see and even abet the kids by not making them take the consequence of their actions, it does noone any favors.

    October 24, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. 4REAL

    What we have here is another Jeffrey...the death penalty would be too kind for this monster. Give him life if found guilty, his peers will take care of him...just like they did Jeffrey. My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to Jessica's parents.

    October 24, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bonnie In Canada

    Where are all the good folks gone? Long time passing.
    The children are being killed on an hourly basis. Give these animals the needle.
    Rest in peace Jessica
    God bless your family

    October 24, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
  9. TvNyC

    Stupid kids nowadays. May she RIP.

    October 24, 2012 at 11:07 pm | Report abuse |
  10. SP

    I do not think life is a good enough punishment when you ended the life of a child. He is 17 but at 17 you either already know right from wrong or you dont. He did not steal his parents car or drink underage. He viciously killed a beautiful little girl. Stole her life and stole her family's life. The punishment should fit the crime.

    October 24, 2012 at 11:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. davon

    if only the perp would have been white..... CNN would be all over that with NO pic of the perp.

    October 25, 2012 at 12:04 am | Report abuse |
  12. Derek - NV

    Sicko alert!!!

    What rights?? He just killed a 10 year old girl. I say he gets a "free ride and seat" to the death chamber. What a god damn sicko!

    If you are not going to execute, at the very least give this sick freak General Public Prison Privileges... The inmates will do what the judicial system is inapt of being able to do. This monster deserves what's coming to him.

    October 25, 2012 at 12:28 am | Report abuse |
  13. Moonshyne

    How could anyone do this to her?? Why are there sick animals like this? If only scientists could narrow down the gene that makes these animals what they are maybe they could have forced euthanasia on them before they get the chance to kill. Long shot but hopefully one day the technology will be there and we can weed out child killers before they ever exist.

    October 25, 2012 at 12:51 am | Report abuse |
  14. Mrs.V

    Really People its not about Blacks or whites it about Our Kids been safe ..we should be talking about ways to reace Kids in this society to become healthier as an Adult.. Today we have many broken Homes ..Kids are more aware and know too much because of things like the internet ..too many shows on T.V that even if rating are on them there is No parental supervision to switch that channel or turn that Tv off when certainn shows are not for kids. We have Kids having Kids..So in reality I am sorry to hear such Lost of a great angel that was taken by such Monster...I can not imagine the pain that this family is going through Right now..all I can say something needs to be done about the way children are been race in this country because if nothing is done then we will have a breed of this types of monsters that pray on the innocent and have no remarks after committing such of horrible crimes....My prayers go out to Jessicas family and may god take care of her little soul.....

    October 25, 2012 at 2:06 am | Report abuse |
  15. steve

    burn him
    death is too good
    so where are the liberal morons who want to rehab this garbage?
    all of you need to burn in hell along with this vermin

    October 25, 2012 at 3:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeres Johnny

      going by your comment: you first, sir

      October 25, 2012 at 4:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Unknown Mich

      Really? There was a girl how was 5 and she was killed!!! Yet no one said anything to that?! That dude is still in prison!! Just because he killed her doesn't mean he should die. I don't care if I sound like i'm defending him. Killing is wrong either way. For fun or revenge.

      October 25, 2012 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • JayneQP

      eh... you say "revenge", others say "justice"

      October 25, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
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