December 11, 2023

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Two California cold case homicides from 1980s solved with advances in DNA technology

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A partnership of legislation enforcement organizations in Orange County, California, announced that a pair of chilly scenario homicides from 1987 and 1989 have been solved owing to advancements in DNA technological know-how. 

Shannon Rose Lloyd, 23, was uncovered dead in her bed room in Back garden Grove, California, in May 1987. A coroner identified at the time that she had been sexually assaulted and strangled to demise, but the investigation went chilly for many years. 

Two a long time afterwards, in February 1989, 27-12 months-outdated Renee Cuevas was located useless along a road in close proximity to the El Toro Maritime base. 

Investigators ended up also originally stumped in Cuevas’ murder, but the Orange County Criminal offense Lab decided that the two cases were connected in 2003. 

Shannon Rose Lloyd, 23, was found murdered in her bedroom in 1987. 

Shannon Rose Lloyd, 23, was identified murdered in her bedroom in 1987. 
(Garden Grove Law enforcement Section)

Final calendar year, applying advances in genetic genealogy and DNA technologies, authorities linked 39-12 months-old Reuben Smith to equally crimes. 

JONBENET RAMSEY Criminal offense SCENE DNA COULD BE IDED IN Several hours, Cold Circumstance RESEARCHER States AS Relatives PUSHES FOR Responses

Smith lived in Orange County in the 1980s but experienced moved to Las Vegas, wherever he was arrested for sexual assault and tried murder of an additional female in July 1998. 

He committed suicide in 1999, but DNA from his arrest was a match for proof that was located at the scenes of Llyod’s and Cuevas’ murders. 

Renee Cuevas' death was linked to Lloyds's murder using DNA evidence, but investigators were unable to identify a suspect for years. 

Renee Cuevas’ dying was linked to Lloyds’s murder utilizing DNA evidence, but investigators were not able to recognize a suspect for a long time. 
(Back garden Grove Police Department)

“The loved ones of Renee Cuevas and Shannon Lloyd have the solutions to the issue they have been asking for more than three decades,” Orange County District Lawyer Todd Spitzer claimed in a assertion. 

“The justice that every single target warrants was hidden away in DNA, but with advances in [investigative genetic genealogy] technological innovation combined with the relentless determination of generations of detectives and the proficient prosecutors and forensic scientists at the District Attorney’s Office, we now know who killed Renee and Shannon.” 

Spitzer claimed that four cold case homicides have been solved in Orange County making use of investigative genetic genealogy, even though about 200 have been solved nationally. 

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The investigative technologies was famously used in 2018 to crack the scenario of the Golden Point out Killer, who terrorized California in the 1970s and 1980s with up to a dozen murders, 45 rapes, and 120 household burglaries. 

Joseph James DeAngelo, 72, was arrested for the crime spree in 2018 following investigators used DNA evidence from a criminal offense scene and as opposed it to DNA samples of family record web sites.