5 Cold Cases Solved In 2021 (After Decades) #3

5 Cold Cases Solved In 2021 (After Decades) #3

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Hi everyone! Welcome to Mysterious 5! Losing a loved one is hard enough, but not  knowing where they are or what happened to them is   absolutely agonizing. The major developments being  made in forensic technology have made it possible   for the families of hundreds of victims to gain  closure on what happened to their loved ones.   In this video, we’re going to take a look at  decades-old cold cases that were solved in 2021. The 1984 case of Virginia Hannon 59-year-old Virginia Hannon lived in a relatively  quiet neighborhood in Pembroke, Massachusetts.  

She had spent most of her life working as the  lunch lady at a local elementary school called   Bryantville Elementary School, and almost everyone  in the neighborhood had witnessed her kindness and   caring nature first-hand. She loved working with  kids and was known to be really good at cooking.   She lived a quiet, humble life and  was quite hospitable to her neighbors,   so everyone who knew her was shocked and  horrified when on the 13th of February, 1984,   someone broke into Virginia’s home and killed her. Virginia had lived alone, because her husband  had passed away 13 years before her death. The  

quaint yellow house she lived in quickly became  a symbol of kindness in the area, and Virginia   would often offer juice, cookies and baked goods  to the neighborhood kids who would often stop by   the house. She was also known to feed and care for  the stray animals that would wander into the area. She had actually retired from her job early  because her aunt, who lived in California,   had left Virginia around $380,000 when she  passed away. She was fairly open about the   inheritance to everyone who asked because she  had no inhibitions when it came to sharing   details about her life with other people, even  if they were strangers. While it was known that   she had stored a majority of the amount in the  bank, it was widely speculated that she kept a   part of the inheritance in cash, hidden around  her house. This has never been confirmed as the   actual cause for the break-in and attack on  Virginia, but it is possible that the news of   the money she had hidden around the house could  have been heard by the wrong type of person.

The last known sighting of Virginia was  on the evening of the 11th of February,   1984, which was a Saturday. Virginia and a  friend of hers named Dolly Harmeth had gone   to church together. The church they attended was  called St. Joseph’s church, and it was around 4   miles away from Virginia’s house. The evening  mass commenced at around 5 p.m., like usual,   and the women had stayed for the entirety of the  mass, before driving to their usual dinner spot,   which was BR’s Restaurant. This restaurant  was around seven miles away from the church,  

and they would eat dinner  there every week after mass. Dolly was the last person to see Virginia  alive, other than the perpetrator,   and she dropped Virginia off at her house at  around 7:30 p.m. Dolly did say that Virginia   struggled to breathe while climbing the steps to  her house, but this was normal for Virginia. She   has a health condition called emphysema, which  made it difficult for her to breathe if she   did anything too physically taxing. Nobody in the  neighborhood heard from her or saw her on Sunday,   so it is believed that the attack likely happened  shortly after she returned home from church. 

Virginia was the primary caregiver for her  step-father who also lived in the neighborhood,   and she would normally prepare his lunch every day  and take it over to his house. However, on Monday,   the 13th of February, lunchtime had come and  passed, but there was no sign of Virginia.   Her step-father’s house help had  actually been trying to contact her   to see if she had a spare key to his house  but had been unable to reach her. So,  

she decided to stop by Virginia’s house to see if  everything was okay and ask for the key in person. It was then that the house help discovered  that Virginia had been killed in her bed.   Signs of serious physical injury could  be seen even though her blanket had been   used to cover her up. Investigators  were immediately called to the scene,   and they found a pair of nylon stockings,  which they believe was used to kill Virginia.   In addition to this, there was a shoe print on  her stomach area, which led investigators to   believe that the perpetrator kicked her at some  point during the attack. This death came as a   shock to the entire neighborhood because Virginia  was so well-liked by everyone in the community   and it was difficult for people to think  of someone who would want to harm her.

The front door and a window next to it had been  tampered with, which indicated that the attacker   broke into the house and Virginia did not let them  in out of her own free will. In addition to this,   Dolly had told investigators  that when they went to dinner,   Virginia had a $100 bill in her wallet.  But when her wallet was checked by police,   the $100 bill was gone. This indicated that  robbery could have been a possible motive   for the attack, and this is actually why a lot  of people believe the attack was carried out   because the perpetrator thought she had a  part of the inheritance money in the house. The search for the attacker led nowhere because  investigators were unable to identify any   suspects. Her neighbors had also not heard  anything unusual on the night of her death,  

that might have indicated a  struggle. Without any clues or leads,   it became difficult for police to identify a  suspect. In 2018, the evidence found at the   scene of the crime was retested and a male DNA  profile was generated from it. But unfortunately,   there was nothing to compare this DNA with,  so the trail for Virginia’s killer went cold. Around 37 years passed before the  police caught their big break.  

On the 3rd of February, 2020, a 58-year-old  man named Jesse Alyward passed away.   A year prior to his death, Jesse had told a  friend of his that he was responsible for the   death of Virginia Hannon. After Jesse passed,  this friend informed police of this occurrence,   and they used a blood sample from Jesse’s  remains to compare his DNA to the DNA found   at the scene. It was a match. Jesse had been  22 years old at the time of Virginia’s death.

In March of 2021, the Plymouth County district  attorney’s office announced the news to the   public, while also stating that there was no  known connection between Jesse and Virginia   prior to the attack and that  she likely did not know him.   Virginia’s nephew, Richard Hannon, and his wife  Judy Hannon have since come forward to express   their gratitude to the police officers who kept  working on Virginia’s case throughout the years.   This really is one of the cases that really  reinforces how the development of forensic   technology can spearhead the effort to solve cold  cases and bring closure to victims’ families.

The cold case of Janet Brochu 20-year-old Janet Brochu had gone out with  some of her friends on the 23rd of December,   1987. She left the bar 45 minutes before  her friends did, with a man they had met   and gotten acquainted with mere hours before  her disappearance. Little did her friends   know that when Janet left the bar that night,  they were seeing her alive for the last time… The group of friends initially went bowling and  had plans to go get drinks together afterwards.   They went to the Waterville bowling  alley, and it is here that the group   met and got acquainted with two  men who were also bowling there.  

In fact, they got along so well that they  planned to regroup later on during the night   at a bar and lounge spot called T. Woody’s,  which was located on the Waterville concourse. The two groups then went their separate ways.  When Janet and her friends reached T. Woody’s,   everyone was allowed inside, except for Janet.  This was because the legal drinking age in Maine   had been increased to 21 in July of 1985, and  Janet was only 20 years old. By this time,   it was almost midnight, and the men they  had met earlier had also arrived at the bar. One of these men told Janet he would drop her  back at her house, and she accepted this offer.  

She was last seen by her friends leaving the bar  with this man. Shortly after they left though,   the man returned to the bar alone to get Janet’s  purse. She had accidentally forgotten her purse   at the bar, and he had come back inside to  get it, while she was waiting in his car.   After Janet had left, her friends stayed at the  bar for around another 45 minutes, before leaving.  Janet did not return home that night,  and her parents, Albert Brochu and   Geraldine Brochu contacted investigators  on the morning of the 24th of December,   to report their daughter as missing. It was also  possible for Janet to need medical assistance   because she was diabetic and took insulin on a  regular basis to regulate her blood sugar levels.  

The search for Janet began almost immediately  after the missing person’s report was filed. Police spoke to the man who had offered to take  Janet home the night before, but he claimed that   when he went back to the parking lot after  fetching Janet’s purse, she appeared to be   sick. Because of this, he told her he could  no longer take her home, and according to him,   this was the last time he saw her and he claimed  to have no involvement in her disappearance. 

The search for Janet continued for  three months until the 18th of March,   1988, when a man found her remains floating  near the Waverly Dam in the Sebasticook River.   Her remains were found in an unclothed state.  An autopsy was performed on her remains,   but the medical examiner could not  determine the cause of Janet’s death.   While it was believed that her body had been  submerged in the water from the night she   had disappeared, no further statements  could be made about how she had died. In addition to this, investigators also  thought it was a possibility that she   either jumped off the bridge or was pushed  off the bridge. Which begs the question,   if she had jumped, what happened to her  clothes? Granted, it had been three months   since she likely died, and her clothes would  have gone through severe decomposition due   to exposure to the elements, but they  would have been there just the same.

In addition to this, only a couple of months after  Janet’s remains were discovered, a 23-year-old   woman from Waterville was also killed in a manner  that bore uncanny similarities to how Janet was   killed. This woman was Geraldine Ann Finn,  who was last seen on the 9th of August, 1988,   at a bar. She had gone out to Pete and Larry’s,  which was a bar on Upper Main Street. While she   was in the company of her co-workers, a man walked  over to speak with her. This man was described as   being around 5’10” tall and possibly weighing  around 150 pounds. He had dark hair, and one   distinct feature that her friends remembered was  the tattoo of a diamond he had on his shoulder.

Geraldine’s remains were found near Skowhegan,  by a man who was taking a walk around his land.   The land was near a wooded area. Geraldine had  also been found unclothed. However, this time,   investigators had enough evidence to apprehend  the killer, who was 29-year-old Gerald Goodale.  

Gerald was found guilty of killing Geraldine  Finn and received a sentence of 75 years. Following his arrest and conviction, he was  also questioned extensively in relation to Janet   Brochu’s death, but he denied any involvement  in her death. Due to a lack of evidence,   investigators could not charge him with  killing Janet, but they strongly believed   that he was the perpetrator due to the  numerous similarities between the cases.   Unfortunately, the lack of evidence did result in  Janet’s case going cold for more than 3 decades. It wasn’t until May of 2021 that they were finally  able to arrest Gerald for killing Janet Brochu.  

Since the case is still through the legal  system, the nature of the new evidence found   is still unspecified. While an article published  in the Bangor Daily News on the 22nd of August   1988 states that Gerald had seen Janet briefly at  the bar’s parking lot on the night of her death,   no statements have been made that verify whether  he was the man who was supposed to drive her home. An official arraignment hearing is yet to  occur in this case, which has been attributed   to the difficult circumstances that the world is  presently in. Unfortunately, Geraldine Brochu died  

in 2015, and Albert Brochu passed away in January  of 2021 – mere months before Janet’s killer would   be brought to justice, so neither of her parents  were able to see their daughter’s case resolved.   As for the new evidence, we will have to wait and  see what the arraignment hearing brings to light. The cold case of Leola Jordan Even in 2021, the Picayune police department  was working tirelessly to solve a 2-decade   old cold case – a family needed answers. These  answers came in the form of DNA test results,   just one month prior to the 23rd anniversary of  Leola Jordan’s death. Everyone in the neighborhood   loved Leola, and the horrific manner that she  was killed left them all begging for answers. Leola lived in a relatively quiet neighborhood in  the Pearl River County of Picayune, Mississippi.  

People from her neighborhood described  Leola as being friendly and well-liked.   She had lived there all her life, and had seven  children, all of whom grew up in the neighborhood. On the 30th of June, 1998, Leola Jordan had been  attacked with a knife in her home on Washington   Street and died as a result of her injuries.  Investigators believed that the perpetrator   was let into the house by Leola herself because  there was no sign of the locks on her doors or   windows to suggest that they had been tampered  with. Several members of Leola’s family also   told investigators that she always locked  her front door, so it was unlikely that the   killer walked in on his own. From the crime  scene, investigators initially determined   that there may have been a fight or disagreement  of some kind when Leola woke up, which escalated   and resulted in the killer attacking her,  before fleeing the scene of the crime. 

For almost 23 years, this case remained  unsolved. That was until Captain Rhonda   Jones of the Picayune Police Department began to  review Leola’s case in October of 2020. She worked   in collaboration with a popular show called “Cold  Justice,” which is produced by the Oxygen network. Due to a lack of resources, the police department  took the help of the show to get DNA evidence   found at the scene of the crime to be tested. The  show helped them send it to a private facility  

which had a much quicker turnaround time. When  the crime scene was first processed back in 1998,   investigators collected almost a dozen samples  of the nightgown Leola was wearing when she   was killed in the hopes that they could  potentially find the killer’s DNA on it.   But since the Picayune police department did not  have the resources to process this DNA evidence,   it remained untested till 2021. The result of the DNA testing was what  allowed investigators to finally arrest   the man responsible for killing Leola Jordan –  her now 47-year-old grandson Sergio A. Williams.  Her family was finally able to receive some  sort of closure with regard to the death   of the person they described  as the matriarch of the family.   In fact, Leola was scheduled to visit  her granddaughter for her nursing school   pinning ceremony, which was taking place in  Joliet, just the day after she was killed.

Several of the investigating  officers who responded to the scene,   including Picayune police chief, Freddy  Drennan, and assistant chief of police,   Jeremy Magri, have stated that  the horrific nature of the crime   made it extremely important for them to solve  the case. They have also stated that they are   grateful to be able to provide closure  to Leola’s family after all these years. The Pecos Jane Doe – Identified in March 2021: On the 5th of July, 1966, a man and a  woman checked into the Ropers Motel,   which was located right on Highway 80. Just a  few hours after they checked in, a maid working   at the hotel would find the woman drowned in  the hotel pool, and the man would drive away,   never to be seen or heard from again. In  addition to this, investigators had no  

idea who the deceased woman was, and it would  take several decades for her to be identified. Its location made it a prime spot for transients  and people looking to rest for a while before   continuing their journey. The couple checked  under the names: Mrs. and Mr. Russell Battuon.   People who saw the couple at the hotel  later stated that the man looked a lot   older than his wife did, at least by  a decade. The woman was described as   looking Mediterranean and having a  tanned complexion with dark hair. Later that day, a maid working at the hotel  found the body of Mrs. Battuon floating in   the motel’s swimming pool. The maid, who  did not know what to do, went and sought  

the help of a waitress at the motel’s café.  The waitress, with the help of another guest,   brought Mrs. Battuon’s remains onto the deck  of the pool. First responders arrived at the   scene and tried to revive the woman, but  she was already unresponsive by then. She   was then taken to Reeves County memorial  hospital and was declared dead on arrival.

Meanwhile, the man who was with her, supposedly  her husband, went to the front desk of the motel   and asked for his identification card. When  the motel employee asked him why he needed it,   he said he needed to provide it to the police  as a form of identification so they could begin   processing his wife’s drowning. The employee  then gave the identification card back to the   man. He was then seen getting into his car  and driving away, never to be seen again. He was reportedly asleep in his room when his wife  had drowned in the pool, but the way he removed   himself from the situation altogether makes him  seem extremely suspicious, to say the least. If   she was really his wife, you would think he would  have at least gone to the hospital she was taken   to, but he did not go to the hospital or ever  attempt to claim responsibility for her remains.

When an autopsy was performed, the  medical examiner found a small red scrape,   just above the victim’s left cheekbone. Other  than this mark, there was no other evidence to   suggest that the drowning was premeditated.  As a result, the woman’s cause of death was   declared as an accidental drowning. Following  the autopsy, the woman’s remains were sent to   the Pecos funeral home, in the hopes that someone  would come forward to claim responsibility.  The drowning did receive quite a bit  of media attention, and as a result,   people from several different states  reached out to investigate the possibility   that the deceased woman could have possibly been  a relative. Several members of the community were  

deeply touched by the tragedy and donated money to  cover the cost of buying her headstone. In fact,   this headstone is one of the saddest parts of this  case. It simply reads, “Unknown Girl, Drowned.”   Nobody ever deserves to be laid to  rest in that way, and it just makes   it sadder to know that this woman’s family  was likely looking for her during this time. Unbeknownst to investigators and her family,  the Pecos Jane Doe had left behind the most   viable clue about her own identity. You  see, when her autopsy was performed,   two words were documented as being scribbled on  her right foot. These words were “Joe” and “Lean.”  The unidentified woman’s details actually had  to be entered into NamUs manually towards the   end of 2014, and it was while they prepared to  enter her details, that investigators realized   that her age had been listed as approximately 19  on her death certificate. This approximation meant  

that there was a good chance that the Pecos Jane  Doe was actually a minor at the time of her death.   However, due to the lack of personal details,  she remained unidentified for decades to come. In August of 2019, the Pecos police department  exhumed her remains and decided to have them   genetically tested in the hopes that they would  be able to connect her with living members of her   family. Her DNA profile was then uploaded onto a  database to see if they were able to get a match,   but since several decades had passed since  her death, this proved unfruitful as well.

The case grew cold once more, and it wasn’t  until investigators realized that they could   use genetic genealogy, that they finally  caught a break in the case. In March of 2021,   they got a familial match. A DNA ancestry site  called Family Tree DNA had shown that the closest   match to the Pecos Jane Doe were three siblings  from Texas. By examining their family tree,   investigators were able to connect the  Pecos Jane Doe to the Hemmy family,   who were from Salina, Kansas. The Pecos Jane  Doe was finally identified as Jolaine Hemmy. Jolaine’s sister, Joyce Hemmy, was the first to  be notified, and she described Jolaine as a shy   girl. Jolaine and Joyce were only fourteen months  apart, and they were extremely close growing up.   At the time of her disappearance, Jolaine  had a much older boyfriend, who the family   did not particularly like. This was because he  was known to treat Jolaine poorly. Joyce last  

saw Jolaine on the 1st of July, 1966. Since then,  the family has been searching tirelessly for her. On the 3rd of July, Joyce received a letter,  which stated “Joyce, well, I got lost. See you   in a couple weeks, maybe. – Jo” The family does  not believe this letter was written by Jolaine,   because nobody in the family called her “Jo.”  Members of Jolaine’s family strongly believe  

that the man who was with her is responsible  for her death because she did not know how to   swim and it was unlikely that she would have  gotten into the pool on her own. Since then,   her death certificate has been updated to show her  actual name, and investigators have stated that   they are still interested in speaking with the man  who checked into the motel with her, back in 1966. (5) We’ve heard of killers confessing to  their crimes while being investigated;   we’ve heard of confessions happening by chance,  and we’ve even heard of deathbed confessions.   But what about confessions that occur  sporadically, with no rhyme or reason? Seems odd,   doesn’t it? Well, that’s exactly what happened  with the convicted serial killer, Edward Surratt.  

The front page of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette  from July of 1978 reads “Coon links Surratt to 18   slayings in the area.”(Context - Eugeue L. Coon, Allegheny County Sheriff in 1978) Despite this, investigators  were unable to ever link him to the crimes beyond   a reasonable doubt. The Modus Operandi was a  match, but there was no solid physical evidence   to place him at the scene of the crimes…  that was until he confessed to them himself. During Surratt’s stint as a trucker with  routes through Pennsylvania and Ohio,   it was discovered that he could potentially be  linked to 27 unsolved killings between the two   states. The first one of these killings,  to which Edward had a known connection to  

was the killing of Luther Langford. On the 1st  of June, 1978, Luther had been found deceased at   his residence in the Western Columbia neighborhood  of South Carolina. Luther had died as a result of   the attack, but his wife made it out alive. Edward  was seen publicly driving around in Luther’s car,  

and investigators had tried to apprehend Edward  for this crime, but he managed to get away. The   car, however, was still recovered, and  investigators found a baseball bat with   Edward’s fingerprints on it inside the car.  This bat was likely used to kill Luther.  While searching Luther’s car for evidence,  investigators also recovered several things that   were the property of Joseph Weinman. Joseph was a  veteran, and he and his wife were found deceased  

in their home on the 30th of September, 1977.  Just like Luther, they were also beaten badly. In addition to this, he was also a person of  interest in the killings of Frank Ziegler, Richard   Hyde, Donna Hyde, William Adams, and Nancy Adams.  Frank had been shot while in his house, which was   a stone’s throw from the Weinman residence. Donna  and Richard Hyde were killed using a shotgun,  

and their remains were found at their house  in Moon Township on the 4th of December, 1977.   William Adams was 29 years old at the time of his  death, and while his remains were recovered, his   wife was nowhere to be found. Edward had also been  placed in Breezewood, Pennsylvania on the 31st of   December, 1977, when Guy Mills, Laura Mills,  and Joel Krueger were killed using a shotgun.   Despite this, Edward managed to evade  authorities… That is, until July of 1978.

On the 1st of July, 1978, Edward broke into  a house and burglarized the family of three   living in it. He then tied the parents up  and assaulted their 15-year-old daughter.   Following the attack, Edward got drunk and  fell asleep in one of the family’s bedrooms.   The family managed to escape during this  time, and police were called to the scene.   When police arrived, Edward was reportedly  still blacked out, and they were able to   arrest him without any physical altercations. The trial for these crimes was held in late 1978,   and on the 20th of September, 1978, he was found  guilty and sentenced to 2 life terms + 200 years.  

During the sentencing hearing, Edward confessed  to killing John Shelkons in Baden, Pennsylvania,   back in January 1978. Since he was already going  to be spending the rest of his life behind bars,   he was not charged in relation to John’s death. But in the summer of 1979, he was put on trial   for killing 66-year-old Luther Langford  in Western Columbia, South Carolina   in June of 1978. He was found guilty and sentenced  to 2 more life terms. Since then, he has been  

transferred between several prisons due to violent  behavior and an attempt to escape from prison. The remainder of cases from 1977 – 1978  subsequently went cold. This was because   even though investigators knew Edward was  responsible, there was not enough evidence to   charge him with the crimes. His confession in  2021 was not the first confession he has made   while being incarcerated. In 2007, he confessed  to killing 6 people – including David Hamilton   and Linda Hamilton on the 20th of September 1977,  John Davis and Mary Davis in November of 1977,   and John Feeny and his fiancé, Ranee  Gregor on the 22nd of October, 1977.  John and Ranee were only teenagers at the time of  their deaths. While investigators are sure that  

Edward is guilty of these crimes, the timing  of his confession is viewed as suspicious.   Immediately after confessing to these crimes,  Edward asked to be transferred to a prison   in South Carolina in exchange for details on  the location of the remains of Ranee Gregor,   Linda Hamilton, and David Hamilton,  but his request was denied. Following this, in June of 2021, he confessed to  killing William Adams, Nancy Adams, Guy Mills,   Laura Mills, and Joel Krueger in 1977, and to  killing John Shelkons in 1978. With these crimes  

coming to light, a clear modus operandi has  emerged – Edward typically burglarizes homes,   regardless of whether more than one person is  living there, and is known to shoot his victims.   Several of their burial sites have never been  identified, and as a result, several families   are still waiting for closure on what happened to  their loved ones. His crimes spanned between 1977   and 1978, meaning he killed at least 12 people  in just 1 year. He is considered a suspect in the  

unsolved deaths of at least 10 more people, in the  states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina. Even though he has personally  admitted to killing 12 people,   Edward Surratt has only been convicted in relation  to the death of one person. Law enforcement’s   reasoning behind this is that he is already behind  bars and that it would take up a lot of money and   resources to extradite him and put him on trial  for these killings. However, this cannot possibly  

mean much to the families of his victims, to  whom this is nothing but blatant disrespect. As always,  Thank you for watching. You can check  out our other videos on similar topics.

2021-08-22 23:03

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