Hanover refocusing on unsolved cold cases

By Sunni Blevins - bio | email

HANOVER, VA (WWBT) - Hanover County investigators are taking a new look at about a dozen cold cases.  They are hoping good old-fashioned police work and information from the public can help them solve some of the most serious crimes the county has ever seen.

These cases range from just a few years to nearly 30 years old, but investigators have never lost hope of bringing a suspect to justice.  They've unsolved murders, rapes and robberies.

In 1985 Theresa Lynn Baker vanished from Chesterfield County. Six months later, her body was found in the Cherrydale subdivision in Mechanicsville. Twenty five years later, her murder remains unsolved.

In more recent years: August 2004, Sherwood Resident Russell Franklin was found shot to death on Old Hickory Drive. His killer has not been found either.

These are just two of about a dozen cases that Hanover County investigators are shedding new light on.

Captain Mike Trice with the Hanover County Sheriff's office says, "the investigators right now are looking back into that case, identifying any witnesses, if we can locate them we are interviewing them again."

Investigators are also sifting through and re-cataloguing old evidence, checking for any new forensics and even calling retired detectives who may remember important elements of a case.

They are also digitizing photos and tapes.

Trice says, "with these cases, we ask that the investigators be methodical, they don't have a deadline, there a just responsible for moving through these cases.

Though this county is known for little crime and quick convictions, investigators are working on these cases in addition to any current crimes.

They hope in the long-run they can help families find closure and justice.

Trice says, "each bit of information that you didn't have that you now have gets you closer to the suspect and we believe it's positive work that's being done."

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