ㅏ Washington state man killed himself in his home as a jury was meeting to deliberate his fate in a 1972 cold case murder — and then found him guilty.
Terrence Miller, 78, was on trial for allegedly murdering 20-year-old Jody Loomis in Snohomish County 48 여러 해 전에. She was heading to a stable to ride her horse in Mill Creek when she was raped and shot to death.
Miller’s suicide took place Monday morning as the jury was assembling at the courthouse to begin a second day of deliberations in the two-week trial, Snohomish sheriff officials said.
With Miller absent in the courtroom, the panel resumed deliberations and then returned its guilty verdict after deliberating three more hours, 그들은 말했다.
He had been free during the trial on a $ 100,000 cash bail.
Loomis’ family members showed no emotion as the verdict was read in court, 에 따르면 Everett Herald.
“I’m glad that we got to hear the verdict,” Jim Scharf, the lead detective on the case, 신문에 말했다. “I think that was good for the (Loomis) family.”
Miller was linked to Loomis’ murder through DNA and genetic genealogy, a new technique that has been used to solve dozens of cold cases across the country.
The match came after DNA from Loomis’ boot was uploaded to the public genealogy website GEDmatch, leading to his identification as a suspect.
Investigators then obtained Miller’s DNA from a discarded coffee cup at a gambling casino and confirmed the match.
He was arrested in April 2019.
KIRO-TV reported that the judge presiding over the trial rejected a defense request not to take the jury’s verdict in light of the suicide.
대신, the judge agreed with prosecutors who argued that after 48 years the Loomis family deserved to hear what the jury had decided, the station reported.
Miller’s court-appointed lawyer, Laura Martin, challenged the DNA evidence during the trial.
Of her client’s suicide, 그녀가 말했다 워싱턴 포스트 월요일에, “Death seemed preferable to letting a jury decide a verdict on tainted evidence.”