Second Sketch of Kyleigh Sousa Suspect Actually Looks Like Human Being -- But it Was Never Released to the Public

Categories: News
To the left is the sketch Tempe Police asked KPHO to not release to the public. In the middle is the suspect in the Kyleigh Sousa murder case, Joseluis Marquez, and to the right is the original sketch distributed by police.
An arrest has been made in the murder of 21-year-old Arizona State University student Kyleigh Sousa, and the Monday morning quarterbacking of how the Tempe Police Department handled the investigation has commenced.

First up: KPHO.

About a week after Sousa was murdered in Tempe, the Tempe Police Department released a sketch of the person they thought was responsible for her death -- and it looked like a hazy side-shot of Dr. Bruce banner after someone made him angry. It also looks nothing like the guy arrested for the murder.

Today, we learned that a second, more-human-looking sketch was created but was never released to the public.

According to KPHO, that sketch was made when retired police sketch artist Jim Bryant contacted the TV station and offered to help create a more-accurate image than the one distributed by police.

KPHO says Bryant felt the TPD's sketch was inadequate, and, after speaking with a witness, he created his own.

KPHO was asked by Tempe police to not release Bryant's sketch because it could hurt the investigation (as if the original crappy sketch was doing anything to help the investigation). KPHO complied and didn't release the sketch.

Yesterday, at a press conference, at which Tempe police announced they'd made an arrest in the case, it became clear the second sketch looked more like the suspect, 20-year-old Joseluis Marquez, than did the first one. It's not like Marquez would be looking in a mirror, but it at least looks like a person.KPHO reporter Sarah Buduson tried to ask Tempe police spokesman Sergeant Steve Carbajal about the second sketch -- but he refused to comment. He pulled off his KPHO microphone and walked away.

(Check out the footage of Carbajal refusing to comment on the second sketch here.)

Apparently, it's a touchy subject for the department, which has been highly criticized for the way in which it conducted the investigation into Sousa's murder.

Despite not talking to KPHO, Carbajal spoke to New Times this afternoon to explain why the second sketch wasn't released.

He says, the sketch was made outside of the scope of the investigation and detectives weren't sure how accurate it was. They believed it would only create confusion if released to the public, which could compromise their investigation.

Carbajal, however, chose "not to make a judgment call" on whether the second sketch looks more like Marquez than the one distributed by his department.

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Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

It's likely the second sketch (seemingly more accurate) will create a defense argument at trial regarding identification of the suspect. It probably won't hold water, but the defense will probably give it a shot to confuse at least one juror.

I will also speculate that the investigation was already focused on the known suspect and his associates and the police department didn't want to release the second sketch because it did look somewhat like the suspect. Since the suspect was known to be transient it was likely he would have taken off if he and/or his associates had seen the second sketch. The first sketch was far enough off that the suspect was probably laughing about it. We'll see who laughs last.


The second sketch looks like him... after he melted.


I watched the Ch 5 news report last night about the photos, and despite what TPD spokesman Sgt. Carbajal told New Times afterwards (reason for not releasing the Bryant sketch to the public), the reasons you gave seem far more probable. It would indicate good police work by TPD, probably advised by TPD lawyers, knowing how things can get fouled up in court when it comes to the suspect's defense. There HAS been a lot of continuing TV news coverage about Sousa's murder since it occurred about 7 months ago, and good investigative work is of paramount importance.

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