On May 19, 1989, the police stopped Christopher John Spreitz after observing that his car was smoking and leaking oil. The officer had observed the same car earlier that night also smoking and leaking oil. The officer noticed Spreitz had blood and fecal matter on his hands, arms, and on the front of his clothing. Spreitz said he had been in a fight. Police checked the location of the alleged fight, and found no indication any fight had taken place. They photographed Spreitz and his car, gave him a traffic citation, and then released him. Three days later, a passing horseback rider discovered the body of Ruby Reid in the desert. The body and surrounding area were covered in blood and fecal material. Recalling the condition of Spreitz's clothing and person when they stopped him, the police again questioned him about the purported fight, Spreitz admitted picking up the victim at a convenience store, but claimed the victim went with him voluntarily to the desert. Spreitz said they struggled in the desert, and admitted striking her several times before raping her. He admitted crushing her skull with a rock because she would not stop screaming, but said he was not sure if she was dead when he left her. The victim's wounds included a broken jaw, five broken ribs, numerous bruises on her arms, legs, and trunk. The fatal wound was a skull fracture, consistent with being struck with a V-shaped rock. Spreitz was convicted of first-degree murder (both premeditation and felony-murder), sexual assault, and kidnapping.

Presiding Judge: Hon. William Sherrill
Prosecutor: Kathleen Mayer
Defense Counsel: Marshall Tandy
Start of Trial: August 9, 1994
Verdict: August 18, 1994
Sentencing: December 21, 1994

Aggravating Circumstances
Especially heinous, cruel or depraved

State v. Spreitz, 190 Ariz. 129, 945 P.2d 1260 (1997).
State v. Spreitz, 202 Ariz. 1, 39 P.3d 525 (2002).