After nearly 40 years, Sacramento police believe DNA technology has finally given them a suspect in the slaying of a 17-year-old girl who was found on the side of a California road.
According to PEOPLE, a witness discovered the partially nude body of high school sophomore Mary London on a rural stretch of road in North Sacramento, just before 8:00 am on January 15, 1981. She had been brutally stabbed multiple times.
The Sacramento Police Department refused to give up on the case, despite it remaining cold for decades. The police used
investigative genetic genealogy to connect a suspect to the crime.
Cops were able to identify a man named Vernon Parker as the suspect. However, Parker himself was murdered more than a year after Mary’s death in 1982.
”The person that we’ve concluded was responsible for this was another young man around her, Mary’s, age that was murdered downtown in Sacramento a little over a year after he murdered Mary,” said Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn.
“Though this case won’t end with the suspect facing the justice system,” said Hahn, “The decades of work by Sacramento Police Department Investigators, forensic personnel and the office of the Sacramento County District Attorney has resulted in what we hope will be closure for London’s family.”
Mary London’s sister Esther Schneider was thankful for the news, as she told ABC10.
“They really did work very hard to find out who did it,” Schneider said the news station. “Thank you for everybody who was on the case.”