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LPD solves the 1976 murder case of Elizabeth Ann Price with help of new DNA technology

After almost 50 years, the Lubbock Police Department has been capable of clear up the murder of Elizabeth Ann Price, which was dedicated by a juvenile at the time.

On April 10, 1976, officers had been known as to the 6200 block of North Cedar Avenue — what was referred to as the Lubbock Regional Airport, in line with a launch from LPD.

Upon arrival, officers positioned Price, a 44-year-old single mom of 5, lifeless in the gatehouse, in line with A-J archives. Detectives instantly started investigating the scene, which was fairly expansive, in line with LPD, and interviewing potential suspects and potential witnesses.

Investigators additionally collected and submitted proof to the Lubbock Department of Public Safety Lab in 1976. However, no tangible leads had been developed attributable to the restricted laboratory technology at the time.

More than 260 interviews had been performed from 1976 to 1984, however none proved fruitful.

In 1984, Henry Lee Lucas, now infamous for confessing to murders he did not commit, was charged with Price’s murder after confessing. However, the expenses had been dismissed in 1985 when it was revealed that his confession was false.

Over the subsequent few many years, the case was transferred to completely different investigators, hoping {that a} new set of eyes or further technological improvement would possibly uncover one thing beforehand unknown. In 2002, proof was submitted to the Lubbock DPS Lab 4 separate occasions, hoping that new DNA technology would break the case. However, it didn’t.

The Texas Rangers acquired the SAKI grant in March 2021, which funded the investigation and prosecution of cold-case sexual assaults. On April 19, 2021, with the grant funding, the Texas Rangers steered that LPD submit beforehand untested proof from Price’s case.

In May 2022, with the help of new technology, laboratory testing found unknown international DNA on the newly-submitted proof. Three months later, with the help of SAKI grant funding, the DNA was submitted to Bode Technology Group in Lorton, Virginia, for genealogical testing.

Bode was capable of hyperlink the DNA to a household. One of the members of that household tree was deceased however their DNA was accessible for comparability.

The suspect’s DNA was submitted to the Lubbock DPS Lab, and on Jan. 18, 2023, it was recognized as Price’s killer.

Further investigation decided the suspect was a stranger to Price.

Lubbock police officers stated state regulation bars them from figuring out the suspect as they had been a juvenile at the time of the crime.

No expenses can be filed attributable to the suspect being deceased, with LPD stating that there isn’t a continued menace to the public.

According to the launch, this breakthrough in the case happened with the collaboration of the Metropolitan Special Crimes Unit, the Texas Rangers Cold Case workforce, the Lubbock Department of Public Safety Lab, the Lubbock Police Department’s Forensic Investigations Unit, and the Madison County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia.

This article initially appeared on Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Lubbock police solve 50-year-old cold case of Elizabeth Ann Price

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