News Releases

Pratt man charged with first-degree murder

PRATT – (June 11, 2014) – A Pratt man has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder, child abuse and child endangerment, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said today.

Joseph D. Sponaugle, 27, was arrested yesterday at 3:47 p.m. in Pratt. He was charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of a female infant. Sponaugle was also charged with child abuse of the female infant and child endangerment of another child.

Upon the request of Pratt County Attorney Kenneth Van Blaricum, the Attorney General’s Office will prosecute the case. Assistant Attorney General Christine Ladner will lead the prosecution team.

Bond has been set at $1 million cash or surety. Sponaugle made his first appearance today in Pratt County District Court. A date for his next court appearance has not yet been set.

All media inquiries should be directed to the Attorney General’s Office.

Sponaugle is presumed innocent unless and until the allegations against him are proved beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.