Murder suspect awaits extradition hearing

Keel mugshot.jpg

Lynn Keel


Staff Writer

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

A Nash County man apprehended this weekend just outside Tucson, Ariz., in connection with the slaying of his wife remains jailed without bond in Tucson pending the outcome of an extradition proceeding later this week, a court spokeswoman said Monday.

Lynn Keel, 57, faced an initial appearance on Sunday and there’s no date set for the extradition, Krisanne LoGalbo, community relations coordinator for the Arizona Superior Court in Pima County, said in an email.

However, a review hearing is set for 2:30 p.m. Thursday, LoGalbo said. At such a hearing, the judge decides if it appears the person charged with committing a crime probably did so, LoGalbo said.

If so, that’s going to start the process of transferring the arrested person back to the state where the crime allegedly was committed, LoGalbo said.

Lynn Keel is facing a warrant, issued Friday from Nash County, charging him with the first-degree murder of his wife, Diana, 38, who was an emergency room nurse in Wilson and mother of two children.

Nash County Sheriff Keith Stone said Lynn Keel was alone and driving a pickup truck in the Grand Canyon State when Nash County Communications received a tip about him being sighted on Interstate 10.

During a traffic stop Sunday by an Arizona state trooper, Lynn Keel was found to have a large amount of cash on him, along with bank receipts and a pocket knife, Stone said.

The Keels lived at a house in the Momeyer area of rural Nash County and Diana Keel was reported missing on March 9. Diana Keel’s body was discovered in a wooded area on March 12 by a state transportation worker in the Leggett area of rural Edgecombe County.

Diana Keel appeared to have been stabbed to death, with there being multiple wounds to the body, Stone said.

Additionally, Stone said the death of Lynn Keel’s first wife, Bess, in 2006 is something he and his team are going to be probing and said plans are to speak with prosecutors.

Bess Keel, 42, died of head trauma in after falling on the front steps at the same residence in rural Nash County where Lynn and Diana Keel lived. The Nash County Sheriff’s Office has said a medical examiner concluded Bess Keel’s death to have been accidental.