MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Tennessee criminal court prosecutor was severely injured in an attack inside her home and remained in a hospital intensive care unit Monday night.
Kate Edmands, 40, a native of Camden, Maine, suffered head and back injuries Wednesday night and remains in critical condition, said Vince Higgins, a spokesman for Edmands’ boss, Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich. Higgins asked that the name of the hospital to be withheld.
“The extent of her injuries were initially critical,” he said Monday. “She’s stabilized and as of today she’s in intensive care.
“We’ve been able to have light discussions with her but nothing too strenuous.”
As of Monday night, no arrests had been made and Higgins wouldn’t speculate on whether the attack could have been an act of retaliation related to the many violent criminals Edmands routinely prosecutes.
“The main concern at this point is her condition,” he said. “Certainly her family, her friends and her family at the CJC (Criminal Justice Center) have circled around her.”
Higgins said he didn’t have other basic details about the incident, such as whether Edmands’ two young children were at home during the attack, who found her, or whether a weapon was used. He did verify that she is separated from her husband.
Her husband, attorney Carlos Provencio, 44, declined to comment about the attack, then added, “There is no story at this time. I’m just giving you fair warning.”
Two of Kate Edmands’ relatives in Maine also declined to comment Monday.
Edmands had worked Wednesday before heading to her home just north of Midtown.
Some courthouse insiders were not only surprised to learn about the attack Monday, but also that prosecutors had managed to keep it quiet for days, even from other courthouse employees.
Memphis police were leading the investigation, but Weirich and Police Director Toney Armstrong agreed to ask for a special investigator, saying Edmands would have worked with many officers who testified in her court cases, Higgins said.
Kristin Helm, a spokeswoman for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, said a TBI agent has been assigned to the case in response to Weirich’s request.
“When the investigation is complete, TBI will turn its case file over to the DA to review,” she stated in an email.
Edmands joined the Memphis prosecution team in October 2008. She was among four prosecutors hired at that time by then-District Attorney Bill Gibbons.
At the time, Gibbons issued an announcement saying Edmands earned a bachelor’s degree from Montana State University in Bozeman and a law degree from The Columbus School of Law at Catholic University in Washington.
Edmands also spent a year working for then-U.S. Sen. Alan K. Simpson.
Before coming to Memphis, Edmands worked as an assistant state’s attorney in Charles County, Maryland.
Commercial Appeal staff reporters Kevin McKenzie and Michael Lollar contributed to this story.
Distributed by MCT Information Services