Parker carried camping ax

by Mark Bubriski | 3/5/01 6:00am

After arresting the two teenagers suspected of the Zantop murders, authorities obtained search warrants for their backpacks to find a camping ax that James Parker told Indiana Police he was carrying and other "objects capable of inflicting injuries or death" that the boys may have had with them.

When Parker, 16, and Robert Tulloch, 17, were apprehended in Indiana, they each wore a backpack: Tulloch had a blue and black Lowe Alpine Systems pack with his name in marker on the back, and Parker carried a purple, yellow and black Jansport bag.

Parker told Indiana police that he had a camping ax in his backpack, according to the affidavit in support of the search warrant for the packs, but it is not clear whether the ax was recovered. This may have been the reason that led authorities to contact members of the Dartmouth Outing Club concerning recent climbing equipment sales last week.

Also, police spoke with two truck drivers, Rowdy Kyle Tucker and Nancy Lee Tucker, who transported the boys from the Sturbridge, Mass., truckstop where they left Parker's family's silver Audi to a Columbia, N.J., truckstop.

Parker and Tulloch told the truck drivers their names were "Sam" and "Tyler," and said they wanted to go to southern California to get jobs on a boat.

The Tuckers gave the boys $20 and a phone number for Nancy Lee Tucker's sister, Madeline Lee Bray in Modesto, Calif.

New Hampshire police obtained warrants for the search of the boys' clothing and backpacks, specifying a camping ax, other dangerous weapons, footwear, footwear impressions, bodily fluids, blood, trace evidence such as hair, fibers and fingerprints, any correspondence or notes listing names and phone numbers, including but not limited to Bray's phone number.

It is not known whether Parker and Tulloch tried to contact Bray.