Death gets a red card at library event

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, July 5, 2016


Jamie Stokes, a highly touted soccer player at the fictional Huntington High School, was found dead at the school on Thursday. The time and cause of death were not known, but the crime was immediately listed as a homicide.

And the investigation began at the Troy Public Library, where three dozen participants in the annual murder mystery event sleuthed for clues to Stokes’ death.

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Detectives from the investigative firm TPL (Truth, Pleas and Lies) in Troy were brought to the high school to secure and search the crime scene for clues to the grizzly murder. Eight persons of interest were identified by chief investigator, Hunt M. Down and interrogated by Pike County Judge William Hightower, who is known to be ruthless in his efforts to get the truth from suspects.

Teresa Colvin of TPL Children and Youth Services, said the suspects included the soccer player’s ex-girlfriend, a romantic interest of the murdered student, a soccer teammate, his high school soccer coach, the coach of a rival team, the school guidance counselor, an older brother and also his step dad.

“Initially the interrogation eliminated several of the suspects,” Colvin said. “Judge Hightower had several of the suspects totally confused and their stories changed over and over. The detectives secured three scenes that held possible clues to the crime, the young soccer player’s bedroom, the coach’s office and the crime scene.


Thirty-six people were involved in the intense investigation that lasted well into the night Thursday.

“The detectives left no stones unturned,” Colvin said. “Young Stokes was killed by strangulation and the rope around his neck was an important clue to who murdered the popular soccer star. As the pieces started to fall into place, one suspect after the other was eliminated.”

Whoever killed Stokes had to be either strong enough to overcome him or cowardly enough to sneak in behind him, Colvin said. Several of the detectives thought two people were involved.

However, Detective Clayton Suell said motive and means would solve the crime and it did.

“Detective Suell found that Coach Wynn Alcost had both the motive and the means to kill his star soccer player,” Colvin said. “The Huntington Raiders were set to win the state soccer championship in the fall on the foot of Jamie Stokes. When, Coach Wynn Alcost learned that Jamie was going to transfer to a local private school, he knew that his chance at a coveted state championship would be gone.”

He knew, too, his coaching career would be over if he let Jamie and the championship elude the Raider faithful.

“So, Coach Wynn Alcost killed Jamie thinking that his murder would be thought as the reason for the losing season, not because he let his star player get away,” Colvin said.

Suell was congratulated for identifying the killer of Jamie Stokes. He will be a key witness in the coach’s trial along with the 35 others who participate in the Murder Mystery Lock-in at the Troy Public Library Thursday night.