Missouri Cops Ask College Students to Help Solve Murder Mystery
Friday, July 03, 2009
COLUMBIA, Mo. — Columbia police are hopeful that DNA evidence and help from some college students may lead to a break in a 20-year-old murder mystery.
Carolyn Williams was stabbed to death in her Columbia home on Jan. 2, 1989. Police believe the murder was drug-related.
Tips have come in — the latest in 2005 — but none has panned out, Detective John Short said.
The case is getting new attention after students in Columbia College's Cold Case Homicide class chose to focus on it during the last semester. The elective class for students pursuing forensic science and criminal justice careers is taught by retired Columbia police Detective Mike Himmel.
(remainder of story at link above)
Win-Win situation. Students get a chance to put their skills to work in a live environment and LE gets 6 new sets of eyes to review evidence! I hope this happens at every college with this type of curriculum, think of all the cold cases which could potentially be resolved. Analytical, please keep us updated
Hope the perp's DNA is in the database!!!!
Nice. Thanks for posting. I grew up in Springfield, MO and went to Columbia often as I had good friends who went to school there. My dad went to Law School in Columbia.
I would like to see a resolution to this case too. The murder of a Korean professor who was stabbed to death on the 3rd floor of a parking garage on campus. His body was put into his trunk and evidence shows that the killer returned to the scene. The crime was very brazen as it was committed in broad daylight.
'The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated'
I was going to post about the following case last week, but got sidetracked and never had time to do so. I hope that you do not mind me posting about this here since it also involves another unsolved cold case in Columbia.
I grew up in Columbia. Lived there for many years and moved away as a young adult. I moved back there about 4 years ago and stayed for another 3 years. I moved away again last year, although I still have family that lives there.
There is another unsolved murder in Columbia, wherein a young mother was found stabbed to death in her home in 1987. This one touches close to home, as the woman was married to a former classmate of mine. The husband had originally been married to my sister's best friend--they divorced after having a son. The husband was cleared of any connection to his second wife's murder. The murdered woman's name is Cynthia Kemple-Buckner.
I have strong reason to believe that my sister might have been involved in Cynthia's murder, but have never been able to prove anything. My sister made many statements surrounding Cynthia's murder--things that made my hinky meter go haywire. My sister committed suicide last fall, so I cannot ask her anything else about what she knew.
About 10 years ago, a task force was set up with some law enforcement agencies from around the state in order to try and solve several unsolved murders. Cynthia's was one of them. My sister made even more cryptic comments at that time. There were two articles written in the Columbia Daily Tribune (one of the local newspapers--the other is the Columbia Missourian) at the time of this renewed interest in the case, but there was very little information disclosed.
I had planned to go to the local library to look up the original articles, but due to other things going on in my life, was unable to find the time to get to the library for research. The archives for the Tribune only go back to 1993, so there is nothing to be found on the earlier articles online.
I would love to pursue this case to see what can be found out, and to determine if my sister was indeed involved in Cynthia's murder. I did speak to the detective handling the case several years ago (Detective Mike Stubbs), and he told me that he had interviewed my sister a couple of times. Unfortunately, because my sister was a sociopathic psychopath with antisocial personality disorder and a pathological liar, he was really unable to glean any information from her that he could use. He did indicate to me that he knew she was hiding something and felt rather uneasy when she left his office.
I know a few details about the crime scene--some that were shared with me by Detective Stubbs and others that my sister told me about.
The last time that I spoke with Detective Stubbs, he indicated that Cynthia's daughter (now a grown young woman) and Jeff, the husband, sincerely want to solve this crime.
If anyone is interested in trying to solve this horrendous crime, please contact me so we can try to figure out where to go from here.
I have been monitering the internet off and on for several years and noticed last night there was a post about Cinde on this sight and that Boone Co. now has a website about their cold cases. There are 3 women listed. Cinde and I were roommates about 1976 in Jefferson City MO. I was her maid of honor when she married Russell. She moved to Columbia after she and Russell divorced and I only saw her once after that. She had met Jeff and I think they were living together. I think Jeff was working the evining shift and I didn't get a chance to meet him. I watched Dateline Friday night and after the show I sent them a brief e-mail about Cinde's murder. I got a very generic e-mail back from them. Last night I typed in Kemple-Buchner and Boone Co Sheriff's Office and this sight came up. I have checked both sites in the past but didn't see anything. The Highway Patrol also has her listed on the deck of cards they give inmates but they don't have a picture. Anyway, I just wanted to touch base. It's good to know that others haven't forgotton her.
I wanted to join Websleuths because the murder of Cinde has always bothered me. I was called in as a suspect because my soon to be ex-husband was having an affair with her husband Jeff. I found out the night of the murder of Cinde. I was excorted to the Sheriff's Department the next day and questioned by Detective Larry McCray who is now deceased for over 2 hours. I knew Jeff because I had graduated with him from high school and had a few classes with him. They were showing me pictures of my soon to be ex that they had developed from a camera that had not been developed. Then they asked me if he and Cinde were having an affair, and if I was a jealous woman and had killed the wrong woman in a fit of rage. I'm 5 ft 7 in and at the time only weighed 105 lbs. I told them I didn't have a temper, that my ex did. I told them the night of the murder, my ex had our son for the evening and I got a call to come pick him up because a friend of him needed him because a friend of their's had been murdered. I told them I had no idea that he was talking about this murder. I was let go, my alibi checked out, I was told not to have any contact with him, they bugged my phone line, followed me so I stayed with friends for over a week. Finally after I was cleared, and my divorce was final my ex-brother-in law who is now deceased told me that his brother, my ex told him that all the details of the murder. That who ever killed Cinde knew her, because the little girl who answered the door let them in. They also knew the layout of the house, because when they put her on the couch, they took the cushions off, placed her on the couch, covered her with sheets, then placed the cusions back on the couch and covered up the couch. At the time, Jeff and Cinde only had one car working, so Jeff's Mom had taken Jeff to work, and when she broght him home is when they found Cinde. He said they person who killed her had to know the layout of the house to know where to find the linens to use to cover her up with. This has always bothered me, because I have always felt like it was my ex-husband. Not long after that, there was the I-70 serial killer who killed 3 woman at strip malls at womens botique shops. They were store managers and two of the 3 women's names were the same as mine. My boss brought in a copy of our local paper with a sketch of the person who supposedly did these murders and it looked just like my ex. I have always been afraid of him, and my husband now knows that. I live in a different town from where everything took place. I want to stay annymous, but was wanting to get this out so I could get some help in what the next steps would be.
My ex wasn't having an affair with Jeff, it was Jeff's sister Kathy. I didn't get that explained correctly. I didn't want to give you the wrong idea about Jeff.
I was Cinde's SIL, married to Jeff's brother. We were very close, and I guarantee she wasn't having an affair. She had the car that day, the kids were in school/daycare. She stopped at her in-laws around noon and went home; I tried to call her that afternoon but there was no answer - her mother had stopped by too, but didn't see her. She was supposed to pick up Jeff from work, but never showed up and his dad took him home. That's when they found her.
A horrible, horrible day for all of us. This Saturday will mark 25 years.
Anything new on this case