Boston authorities announced a break in the Boston Strangler case.
New DNA evidence linking Albert DeSalvo to one of the unsolved Boston Strangler victims, Mary Sullivan, nineteen, is key in exhuming DeSalvo’s body to determine once and for all his link to the victim. Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis announced new evidence that can now be linked with 99.9% certainty to the late Albert DeSalvo.
Authorities concluded that DNA from semen collected in Mary Sullivan’s rape and murder produced a “familial match” with him. The Boston Police Commissioner said detectives followed relatives of DeSalvo, waiting to grab DNA for comparative purposes. That opportunity presented itself when a relative of DeSalvo discarded a plastic bottle, which was collected and examined for a match.
Albert DeSalvo was an Army veteran and married with children. He confessed to the Boston Strangler murders of thirteen women, but from the moment it was given, there was skepticism and controversy. There was no evidence linking him to the murders until now.
DeSalvo was sentenced to life in prison in 1967 for unrelated armed robberies and sexual assaults. He escaped in February of that same year with two inmates from Bridgewater State Hospital. He later turned himself in and was transferred to Walpole, a maximum security prison. He eventually recanted his Boston Strangler confessions while at Walpole. In 1973, he was was found stabbed to death in the prison infirmary. No one was convicted of his murder.
Boston officials say the evidence in the case has never changed but the ability to use that evidence with today’s DNA technology has surpassed every hope and expectation of investigators assigned to the case.
The Boston Strangler targeted women ages nineteen to eighty-five years old. Without any sign of forced entry, authorities speculated that the strangler either knew his victim or somehow talked his way into their homes.
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