Murder cases can see a quick resolution, or they may remain unsolved for decades. They are a tricky type of case for law enforcement to investigate and for prosecutors to prosecute. The burden of proof on the prosecution to get a guilty verdict is huge. Plus, these cases require a lot of resources. So, when a murder case goes cold in Texas, it just means there are no new leads or information that allows for prosecution. Every once in a while, though, something happens that renews a cold case.
Technology is quickly changing the way law enforcement investigates murder cases. The ability to map DNA recently helped to solve a case from 1983. An 11-year-old girl was taking out the garbage from the hotel room where her family was staying in Arlington on a June evening when a stranger abducted her.
She was then raped and murdered. Her body was left along the Trinity River where construction workers found her the next morning. The cause of death was strangulation.
The Fort Worth police worked with Parabon Nanolabs to use DNA from the scene to create images of what the suspect may look like now and at various points in the past. After finding a DNA match using the genealogical mapping technology, law enforcement began to investigate the suspect, determining that he was, in fact, the murderer.
Even though law enforcement was able to positively identify the murderer, he will never face trial. This is because he died in 2004. The family of the victim, though, are fine with that. They are happy to get closure and relieved that they will not have to go through a trial.
Source: The Dallas Morning News