A.D. The rape and murder of a 14-year-old Atlanta girl in 1995 has been resolved after 26 years due to DNA and genetic technology, police said Tuesday.
Nicole Smith was on her way to school with her sister on June 7, 1995, but she forgot something and walked into the woods to return home. Atlanta police say she was brutally assaulted by a man in the woods and shot twice in the face.
Authorities did not name the suspect at a news conference, but identified him as 49-year-old Kelvin Arnold to NBC News.
He finally identified the suspect two decades later, but it was too late for justice because Arnold died of a liver and kidney failure in Fulton County, Georgia, on Aug. 29, while hospitalized, police said.
However, the police department said the findings are a sign that they will never give up on cold issues and that it will be closed to the families of the victims.
After Smith’s death, the Atlanta Police Department interviewed hundreds of people and took blood samples from at least 50 people.
In the case of Smith, a DNA profile has been discovered, but the identity of the killer has remained a mystery for years.
Detective Vincent Velazquez reopened the case in 2002.
A.D. In 2004, nine years after Smith’s attack, a forensic contest was held over the rape of 13-year-old Betty Brown in East Point, Georgia, police said.
“That means Nacho’s killer is back,” Velazquez said.
Velazquez He retired in 2017 and reported the matter to Scott Demster, a homicide detective in the Cold Case.
According to Demster, it took three years to develop Arnold as an interested person with the help of foreign genealogies and ancestral databases. The researchers obtained the DNA sample and sent it for testing.
Last month, the Atlanta Police Department of Georgia announced that the forensic laboratory had been able to match the DNA profile with that of Smith and Brown.
“Today is a very sad day for me,” Smith’s mother, Aquanelia Smith, told a news conference on Tuesday.
“I never thought this person was dead. The many unanswered questions I have asked him and I will never be able to ask or answer.”
She hugged the silver.
“This is part of my life that I’ve been hiding for a while because I don’t want to live in that pain anymore,” Brown said. “I argued a lot because on the one hand I did not allow this to control me, but on the other hand I want the family to suffer, because he is not suffering here. I want them to feel my pain. The family has felt for years.”
Authorities say there is no evidence that Arnold was involved in other crimes. He was never arrested or charged in any way with Smith or Brown.