From media reports available, we know the Amber Alert was issued and cleared within a day, perhaps by events down in Alabama.
Let us go back to June the 10th of 2011. The LPD report saids that the lead detective in Trey's murder case interviewed Josh Young in his car, trying to get more information about the night before the murder and discovery the following afternoon of the victim's mortal remains. Now where he was asleep could be where "home" was for the kid. If he was at his dad's house that would be something, but I just reread that statement. Detective Russ wrote that Josh told him about running into Trey Zwicker (the victim) after the cookout that night. The conversation was about hunting for turtles though Trey was not planning on it that night. So I think Josh said he fell asleep at Cassie and John's house. However, I wonder if Josh did not remember where he slept that night or was told by Gouker to fib to police about his whereabouts, since it was about a month after the murder. (The real killer must have terrified the boy into mentioning Cassie and John's house, Maybe Gouker planned to frame Josh eventually.)
Remember the media reports say Amanda and her daughter had just fled and on June 6 or thereabouts, she filed that protection order against Gouker. Detective Russ' radar was up for something unusal. Somehow, I cannot understand the logic of the transcript. It seems so "artificial". Which raises the question if Josh was made to lie about his whereabouts the night of the murder? Either he was there and made to say to Russ in the June 10th interview to say he was at Cassie and John's house down the street or the detective misunderstood the interview. Either way to say Gouker did not warp his son's mind by now not to say the truth of that night to the cops is very possible.
It makes me assume that Little Josh was at his dad's house the whole night and that Trey sneaked out of the house without Gouker's or his mother's knowledge. That Gouker flew into a rage and dragged poor Amanda with him is no small feat. Maybe she thought Gouker was going to get her son and forcefully take him home. That, unfortunately, did not happen. For Gouker, this was the night to act on his impulses, which we see in his past criminal history had not changed since 2002. Trey must have really ticked him off. I assume that Trey was indeed planning to smoke weed with the neighborhood kids and then vandalize some cars that night. There was a struggle. Gouker, since he was bigger and stronger, succeeded to take that bat away from Trey and proceeded to beat the poor boy to death, right in front of his own mother! Maybe it is just an opinion, but to doubt that is not to see the forest for the tree. This is perhaps the only way such damage was found in the autopsy. Gouker then took the body and dumped it in the woods behind the high school. Amanda was too much in shock and in fear to run for the police. Gouker then drug her to Cassie and John's house where they changed clothes and the other couple arrainged to dump the murder weapon and the clothes both were wearing during the fatal encounter. This occurred in a tight time period around the midnight hour. It would explain why the couple was later spotted on survailence camera at a gas station buying stuff to calm their nerves. After that they went to Cassie and John's house or to their own house, perhaps with phone contact with one of the friends to see if they disposed safely of the evidence.
Somehow, Gouker was uneasy with Detective Russ' prodding of his son and other people in Trey's murder. By now, he was afraid Amanda would get more courage to tell the truth. Maybe he would get the truth from Little Josh. Maybe with his threats, he admitted to the killing Trey to Josh. Which is why two days after June 10th interview, Gouker fled Louisville with Josh. Their run ended three days later when Gouker, Young and a woman Gouker knew named Jaira Ann Riddle were all "arrested" down in Alabama. The Amber alert did not go out until June 16, the day after, so Louisville cops did not have any idea about the arrest until Madison, Alabama later that day informed them they had them in jail after the June 15 arrest at a local motel, I think.
Now Gouker was "armed and dangerous" since a gun was found in his possesion by Madison cops. They already had him for kidnapping that other woman, not Ms. Riddle but some other lady who was forced to drive his party around. Since Little Josh was not involved in this kidnapping, Madison cops had no choice but to give Josh back to Kentucky CPS people from Louisville.
Now here are some questions with my opinions. I do not know why Louisville cops acted to rashly to arrest Josh before. Now I think that Det. Russ and his fellow investigators were stumped about the murder. This and the exhaustion of the travel schedule had a factor in the eventual arrest.
1. Why were kidnapping charges not filed against Gouker in Young's kidnapping? Possible reason: It is complex. I said that LPD were of an opinion that since Josh was fifteen, he was deemed, over the objections of CPS perhaps, too old to warrent these against Gouker. The question of if Gouker's orginal custody order in March could have been rejected and in that way, CPS filed the charges themselves, but thanks to Gouker's actions and the actions of the prosecution, they had not enough time to react since they the cops only found out on the 16th that Gouker was arrested in Alabama, clearly in violation of his parole conditions. Gouker had four days between the 12th (a Sunday) and the 16th (when the Amber Alert came out, a Thursday). Remember Ms. Riddle waited until the 20th to mention Little Josh, a Monday. Tuesday, Det. Russ was informed and suspect brought back to Madison (I think another PD was holding Gouker for them). He and another detective came to Madison to interview him on a Wednesday (the 22nd).
2. When did Gouker spout off about the murder to Madison cops? Again, June 22; according to p. 128 to 129 of the discovery, Gouker started talking about the murder to a detective there, knowing Russ and friend were on their way thanks to the cryptic statement from Ms. Riddle. (Two days before, Ms. Riddle said that she heard Little Josh brag about the murder during their trip from Louisville.) This promped the interview that the Madison cops have with Gouker, where he lied further to them. (This gives me the conclusion that Gouker planned all that week with Ms. Riddle and perhaps by phone to Cassie to frame Little Josh once they heard he was returned home with no charges filed over the latest caper.) The cops in Madison felt obligated to inform Detective Russ. Later on June 22, a Wednesday, Russ and another LPD detective, Ross Stalvey, arrived to further interview Gouker about Trey Zwicker's case after Det. Russ was called by Madison cops about Ms. Riddle's revelations and Mr. Gouker's statements. By their words and a further phone call to Cassie, Little Josh was arrested one hour later on the 23rd by the LPD.
3. When was Little Josh returned to Louisville? Before June 20th would be the most logical clue since this was a day before Det. Russ interviewed Josh Young that afternoon of the 21st about the murder case. He must had received the call from Madison cops about Ms. Riddle's statement sometime that morning and before Gouker's little "act" of fatherly love. Since the Det. Russ and Det. Stalvey were down in Alabama on the 22nd, that Wednesday, I assume without CPS records in front of me that Little Josh returned to Louisville before Ms. Riddle and Mr. Gouker started to spout off about the murder with the help of Ms. Cassie. After the interview in Madison, Det. Russ was back in Louisville to interview Cassie Gouker. It was morning so depending on their movements, Russ and Stalvey were quite exhausted by this time. They willing to listen to Cassie and after that one phone call, arrest Josh Young that afternoon.
4. Did the detectives obtain a warrent for Josh Young's arrest that afternoon? It was possible to have one in their possession thanks to the three interviews with Gouker and the two women. (The report was filed that afternoon. Though I have to add here that if you look at the arrest record the arrest occurred over an hour after they called Cassie. When Cassie gave them her story, the cops pounced on Little Josh without having to get a warrent. What cops say, "probible cause"!) Proesecutors did not stall like they did on charging Gouker with kidnapping. This arrest was a week and a day after the arrest in Madison, Alabama and a week after the Amber alert.
5. How could an Amber Alert not be issued earlier? The answer was that school was done for the summer. Amanda and her daughter had moved out. They had the protective order as of June 6th. So no one missed the boy. So the only person who could have started the process would have been some close relation. Maybe Cassie Gouker was the person who filed the "missing person" report. I think the cops did not. None of the other relations with the exception of Gouker's mother. But it showed either Cassie did not know about the arrest the prior day or knew about it from Gouker himself if he was allowed any phone calls. I assume Gouker called Cassie. She waited until the sixteenth. The alert was issued. This prompts Madison cops to tell the Louisville cops to drop it, which they do by that evening. I do not know why they did that, but it was all because Gouker assumed the day of his arrest that the cops in Madison would return his son to CPS in Louisville. When that happened, he must had overheard the talk from Madison or Homewood cops, his prearranged plans with Ms. Riddle prompts his interview where he lied which is repeated to Russ and Spivey later that day, which led to the statement the following morning with Cassie by phone which leads to Little Josh arrested for a crime his father committed almost two months earlier.
So there you have it. This is cause and effect. Though they waited until they had Gouker in a Kentucky prison before the prosecutors formally charged Josh Young with the two charges that November via Grand Jury as an adult. (I assumed they automaticly charged Josh as an adult since he was fifteen.) Why did cops in Louisville rush to judgement and why did Jefferson County prosecutors do the same? The whole country wants to know. So speak up. Time is of the essence!
This is my opinion using available evidence release in this case.