COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say they have solved the killing of a 15-year-old Ohio boy whose dismembered remains were found nearly 40 years ago.
A Delaware County deputy sheriff discovered John Muncy’s body along a roadway in October 1983. Detectives believe Muncy was slain in Columbus, where he lived, and his body was later dumped.
County Sheriff Russell Martin cited advances in technology and sheer determination by his staff Wednesday as key to identifying the murder suspect, Daniel Alan Anderson, who died in 2013. Martin said Anderson, who authorities say was 30 at the time of the crime, had ties to the area and had a violent criminal past.
Attempts to locate relatives of Anderson’s were unsuccessful on Thursday. The Delaware County sheriff’s office said many of them had also passed away in recent years.
The initial investigation into the slaying lasted several years but stalled because blood samples at the time were able to determine only blood types. Detectives then reopened the case in 2010, hoping that advances in DNA analysis might help.
Almost two years ago, they learned about a case in Washington state that was solved through DNA testing and the use of genealogical data. Delaware County detectives then sought help from a private laboratory, DNA phenotyping, genetic genealogy and forensic genealogical research.
The results, combined with information gleaned locally from suspects and their relatives, “predicted with a high confidence level that the suspect was Anderson or one of his two brothers, Martin said. After the siblings were quickly eliminated as suspects, detectives asked technicians at the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation for a DNA profile of the key suspect to compare with the killer’s DNA.
BCI confirmed that the DNA found at the crime scene matched Anderson’s.