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Roy Snell Extradited Back to Michigan in 36-year-old Cold-Case Homicide

LANSING – Roy Leando Snell, 55, was extradited to Michigan Saturday afternoon from Hennepin County, Minnesota by the Michigan State Aviation and Field Support Section. He faces felony murder and firearms charges in Michigan in relation to the 1983 disappearance of Richard Atwood.

Snell is expected to be arraigned at the 78th District Court in White Cloud, Michigan as early as Monday, even though the court is currently closed to the public in response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Snell is being charged in Newaygo County with one count of homicide-felony murder, punishable by life without parole, and one count of weapons-felony firearm, punishable by two years in prison to be served consecutively and preceding any term of imprisonment imposed.

Snell was arrested March 13 in Minneapolis by the Minneapolis Violent Criminal Apprehension Unit. He is being charged jointly by the Michigan Department of Attorney General and Newaygo County Prosecutor Worth Stay.

“I would like to thank the Michigan State Police, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office and Prosecutor Stay for all their hard work on this,” Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said. “Cold cases are difficult cases to investigate, which makes good teamwork that much more important.”

“Sometimes an arrest and the passage of time gives witnesses with information about a crime the courage to come forward,” said Michigan State Police Detective First Lt. Mike Anderson.  “Although 36 years have passed, we feel there are still people in West Michigan who have information about this case that could benefit both the detectives and prosecutors; we would like to hear from them. Even though the information may seem insignificant, it can be the missing piece of the puzzle investigators are looking for.”

Information about the murder of Richard Atwood or any West Michigan cold case can be given in a variety of ways including:

  • Speaking with a detective in person or by phone at the Michigan State Police Hart Post at 231-873-2171 or the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office at 231-689-7303.
  • A call to the Michigan State Police Cold Case Tip Line at 989-775-9302.
  • An anonymous tip can be left at Silent Observer of West Michigan or by calling 616-774-2345 .