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  1. #1
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    Jan 2015
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    TX - Doris Rivers, 21, murdered in her El Paso home, 12 Nov 1970

    http://www.elpasotimes.com/story/new...rder/73821914/

    Willie James Johnson, 70, was arrested in Madison County, Miss., by authorities in that county as well as El Paso police detectives who traveled there to help make the arrest on Sept. 28.
    [Doris] Rivers, a single mother in 1970, was found stabbed to death in her home in Central El Paso on Nov. 12, 1970.
    A phone call from the victim’s granddaughter a couple of years ago prompted EPPD detectives to re-open the case.
    Johnson was a soldier at Fort Bliss when Doris Rivers was murdered.

  2. #2
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    Rivers' son DeVon, who was 5 years old at the time of his mother's murder, declined an interview but said, "I thank the detectives and the El Paso Police Department and all those in Mississippi who helped."
    http://www.elpasoproud.com/news/loca...-womans-murder

  3. #3
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    Oct 2014
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    Trial underway for man accused of killing woman in 1970

    http://www.elpasoproud.com/news/tria...1970/663802850

    On Monday, prosecutors called several witnesses including Rivers’ son, Da’von Mitchell, who was five years old at the time of the incident.

    Mitchell said he discovered his mom laying on the ground with a knife in her.

    On Monday, the jury also heard from a medical examiner. However, defense attorneys argued that he could not be an expert in this particular case because he didn’t do the autopsy himself.

  4. #4
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    Oct 2014
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    Former Bliss soldier on trial for 1970 cold case acquitted

    http://www.kvia.com/crime/former-bli...tted/368262773

    A judge acquitted the former Fort Bliss soldier accused of accused of murdering an El Paso woman who rejected his advances nearly 47 years ago.

    Wednesday, the judge said DNA evidence would not be allowed as evidence because a "chain of custody was not established," it was not stored properly, and all witnesses are dead.

    "We disagree very strongly with the judge's ruling. I did believe there was sufficient evidence for the jury to consider," said Assistant District Attorney James Montoya.

    Montoya told ABC-7 the prosecution's case was entirely based on a DNA match obtained in 2015 when the victim's fingernail was scraped.

    "The person who collected the fingernail scraping back in 1970 is deceased, he's been long deceased," said Montoya, "However, there's another police officer present who observed the fingernail scraping being taken. We believe his testimony was sufficient to prove what was tested in 2014 or 2015 was the item collected in 1970."
    "It was extremely frustrating," said Shavon Prince, Rivers' granddaughter. "Back then, we didn't have the witnesses we needed to go forward so it became cold. Now, 40 years later, when we have the technology to bring the physical evidence in, they throw it out. It's extremely frustrating, especially because 12 people didn't get to decide, it was the judge, the judge threw it out."

    Prince told ABC-7 that "at the end of the day, that DNA got there and it was his and it was at the crime scene, so everything else is irrelevant. He got off on a technicality."

    "God will be the ultimate judge," Prince said.
    http://www.elpasotimes.com/story/new...ssed/98590358/

    On Wednesday, 210th District Court Judge Gonzalo Garcia granted a directed verdict motion in the trial, effectively dismissing the case even before jurors deliberated.

    Without giving any comments, Johnson was escorted back to the El Paso County jail. He's expected to be released this week.

    Prosecutors cannot appeal Garcia's ruling.

  5. #5
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    Texas police thought they had a cold case solved, then they didn't

    http://www.chron.com/news/houston-te...d-10996074.php

    El Paso Police Detective Michael Aman got a DNA match on fingernail clippings from a homicide in 1970 to someone who was acquainted with the victim. The match happened even though DNA evidence wasn't in use four decades ago.

    But, when it came time to bring the man charged with killing Doris Rivers to trial, police and prosecutors found out the evidence was useless.

    El Paso Judge Gonzalo Garcia last week threw out the case against 72-year-old Willie Johnson because the detective who had collected the evidence back in 1970 was dead. Therefore, he was unable to testify about the chain of custody the collected evidence had gone through.

  6. #6
    I understand the necessity of adhering to COC protocol and proper procedure, but this really pisses me off.

    Travesty! Farce! Horseshit!

    I feel so awful for this family. SMH. Justice, where are you?



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