Governor sends extradition request for return of Sacramento woman

RENO - Gov. Kenny Guinn is sending a formal request to his counterpart in California seeking the return of a Sacramento woman accused of surgically removing her niece's nearly full-term baby and killing both mother and child.

''I suspect they'll expedite this,'' Lyon County District Attorney Robert Estes said Thursday.

Erin Rae Kuhn-Brown, 31, is charged with two counts of murder in the death of her niece, 17-year-old Kathaleena Draper, and her unborn baby last month.

Investigators allege Kuhn-Brown asphyxiated Draper at a Fernley motel after the teen changed her mind about letting Kuhn-Brown adopt her baby. They say Kuhn-Brown, an emergency room technician, then tried to deliver the baby alive but the infant boy died a short time later.

Nevada authorities are asking to have Kuhn-Brown brought to Lyon County to stand trial for the murders, which they say took place while the two were driving to Las Vegas.

Draper's body was found wrapped in plastic near a Sacramento dump site on June 17.

After her arrest in Sacramento, Kuhn-Brown led police to the baby's body near Silver Springs.

Kuhn-Brown, who remains jailed in Sacramento, indicated she would fight her return to Nevada to face the double murder charges and a potential death penalty.

Guinn signed a formal request asking California Gov. Gray Davis to issue a governor's warrant for her return to Nevada. The paperwork was sent to Davis' office on Thursday, officials said.

Kuhn-Brown could still challenge the warrant once it is signed, meaning it could be weeks or even possibly a few months before she is brought to Nevada to stand trial.

Estes said he hasn't decided whether to seek the death penalty in the case, though he plans to file papers reserving the right to do so.

''I won't make that decision until I absolutely have to,'' he said.


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