More than 50 years later, police ID 9-year-old’s killer in Georgia cold case

On a January afternoon in 1972, a 9-year-old girl was sent across the street to a laundromat to wash clothes. She never made it back home.
— Read on

Work by the four original detectives on the case — Lt. Bill Hutson, Major Tim Buckley, Capt. Bill Elliott and Lt. Ray Owens —to gather and preserve evidence was key to solving the case, according to the district attorney. 

The killer’s family cooperated with the investigation and with the help of Florida-based DNA Labs International, Debbie’s killer was identified. Rose’s body was also exhumed for further confirmation.

Child Murder, Rape Case That Haunted Georgia Community Over 50 Years Has Been Solved

A key piece of evidence that helped investigators solve the case was a cloth found on Debbie Randall’s body that investigators kept preserved for over 50 years. DNA technology helped them extract DNA evidence from the cloth as well as identify a hair found on the victim, which provided a partial profile.

Every week there is news of an arrest or conviction of child predator or child porn purveyor. I try to post as many as I can so you can see that many times the defendant is someone you might see at work, church, your neighborhood or your kid’s school. It’s not always an obvious creep.

Now it seems there is a story every week about cold case homicides from 30, 40, 50 years ago being solved using third-party labs and genetic genealogy. These stories used to make me feel hopeful. Now they are starting to make me really angry. What about the last outfits Mark, Jill, Kristine and Tim wore? What about Jill’s backpack and the contents? What about Tim’s skateboard? How lucky this killer/killers was/were to find victims in Oakland County and to have a medical examiner like Robert Sillery conducting the first three autopsies.

In the most heinous unsolved serial killing spree of kids from Oakland County, are you telling me the evidence was not treated the way a cloth from Debbie Randall’s body was from 1972 to the present?

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