Former R-3 coach linked to possible homicide

A 30-year-old Kansas City man who was an assistant coach for the Platte County High School freshman boys basketball team the past three seasons was charged with tampering with a motor vehicle in a case connected to the possible homicide of a Northland woman. Marcus J. Simms was charged last week in Clay County with tampering with a motor vehicle, a Class C felony. As of The Citizen’s Tuesday evening press time, he remained in custody at the Clay County Jail in lieu of a $500,000 bond, a high amount for such a charge. Jim Roberts, a spokesperson for the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office, said Tuesday that no other charges had been filed against Simms and no other charges had been filed in the case of the woman’s death. The dead woman was identified as Michelle Boldrige, 31, of Kansas City and she is believed to be Simms’ girlfriend. She was found in her apartment in the 7900 block of North Hickory Street April 30. When asked about the high bond set in the Simms case, Roberts said, “He was allegedly naked and bloody and trying to steal a car near a school bus barn.” According to court documents, authorities allege Simms is the person who a bus driver from the Liberty School District says approached her shortly after 7 a.m. April 30 at the Liberty School District bus parking lot in Liberty. The woman said a naked black man, about 5-feet, 8-inches tall, with short dreadlocks and with blood on his left hand, approached her while she was in her bus. The woman said she told the man to “go away,” to which he replied, “You don’t understand, someone just killed my girlfriend.” She then said he ran to the bus building and tried to get in. Court documents state a surveillance video covering some of the property shows a naked black man attempt to gain entrance into the bus building. He then left the field of view. A few seconds later, a silver mini-van driven by a black male exited the parking lot. He appeared to have a blue key lanyard in his right hand and an electronic device in his left. His hands also appear to be stained red. Another bus driver who was the owner of the mini-van was contacted and said she had left her keys in her vehicle. She said that she had not given anyone permission to drive her vehicle. At that time, officers were notified that the person of interest — later identified as Simms — was involved in a traffic accident involving the silver mini-van, which had run off the road near the juncture of Missouri Highway 152 and Interstate 435. A report from a Parkville Police Officer who responded to the scene said Simms admitted he was driving the silver mini-van and that it did not belong to him. The report stated Simms was unable to explain why he ran off the road. Simms was transported by ambulance to a local hospital and examined before being released to authorities. Court documents also state officers discovered a green 2005 Ford Focus in the parking lot of a probation and parole office near the school bus lot. Officers saw what “could be dried blood” on its steering wheel, its gear shifter and the screen of a cellphone on the back passenger side floorboard. Police believe Simms may have driven the Focus from the apartment complex on North Hickory to the bus building. If convicted of the tampering charge, Simms faces up to seven years in prison and a $5,000 fine. Simms has plead not guilty to the charge and a Clay County court date of May 20 has been set. Roberts said the death of Boldrige was still under investigation.