Category Archives: Vidocq Society

Retired FBI agent to lead Johnson cold case probe

Adams met with members of the Ogletree family, including Johnson’s sister Becky Peterman, Aug. 18 to discuss his plans. Adams said he intended to bring in a retired investigator with no prior history working the murder to put fresh eyes on the vast but aging case file.

The investigation will be paid for with forfeiture funds generated by the DA’s office.

Last week, Adams swore in retired FBI agent Jalaine G. Ward of Macon to head up the Johnson cold case team. Ward retired after 27 years as an FBI special agent based in Macon. She is now associated with Gold Shield 1881, consulting on corporate security and investigations and corporate executive protection detailing. With the FBI, she had 24 years experience in crisis negotiations and behavioral analysis profiling. She worked at length as a crisis negotiator and coordinated the FBI’s Atlanta behavioral analysis unit.

Much profiling was done on the Johnson

Read more at: http://www.pikecountygeorgia.com/archives/6758-Retired-FBI-agent-to-lead-Johnson-cold-case-probe.html

In 1989, Someone Tried to Murder a 600-Year-Old Oak Tree in Texas

By Matthew Shaer

On a brisk day last November, law enforcement professionals and forensic scientists crowded into a dining room at the Union League in downtown Philadelphia to eat lunch and stare at photos of dead bodies. The contrast was startling: fine steaks served on white china, sumptuous wallpaper dimly lit by elegant candelabra, and blood and limbs projected onto a screen. Tucked into the back of the room, I struggled to keep down my coffee. My tablemates, most of them graying and austere, clad in smart, dark suits, seemed unbothered.

“Can you make the picture a little bigger?” shouted one.

“It’s hard to see the hands,” added another.

The hands in question belonged to David Hayes, a retiree from a small town in Nebraska. Two years earlier, in the fall of 2010, an intruder had broken into the back door of a condo owned by David and his wife, Joan.* David was savagely

Read more at: http://mentalfloss.com/article/504142/1989-oak-tree-poisoning-austin-texas

Thieves Use Paris Catacombs Route to Raid a Private Wine Cellar

By Matthew Shaer

On a brisk day last November, law enforcement professionals and forensic scientists crowded into a dining room at the Union League in downtown Philadelphia to eat lunch and stare at photos of dead bodies. The contrast was startling: fine steaks served on white china, sumptuous wallpaper dimly lit by elegant candelabra, and blood and limbs projected onto a screen. Tucked into the back of the room, I struggled to keep down my coffee. My tablemates, most of them graying and austere, clad in smart, dark suits, seemed unbothered.

“Can you make the picture a little bigger?” shouted one.

“It’s hard to see the hands,” added another.

The hands in question belonged to David Hayes, a retiree from a small town in Nebraska. Two years earlier, in the fall of 2010, an intruder had broken into the back door of a condo owned by David and his wife, Joan.* David was savagely

Read more at: http://mentalfloss.com/article/504097/thieves-use-paris-catacombs-route-raid-private-wine-cellar

From Genetic Genealogy to Rapid DNA Analysis and MPS, Explore Real-Word Forensic DNA Applications with the …

MADISON, Wis.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The 28th
International Symposium on Human Identification
(ISHI) will feature
presentations from leading professionals in the fields of forensic DNA
analysis, genetic genealogy, forensic anthropology, law enforcement and
more. The largest international conference on DNA analysis for human
identification, ISHI attracts more than 900 DNA analysts and forensic
scientists and features 50-plus experts presenting their latest research
and case work. It provides participants an opportunity to explore and
discuss the latest trends, technologies and ethical issues in the field.

ISHI’s 2017 presenters will cover

Read more at: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20170829005682/en/Genetic-Genealogy-Rapid-DNA-Analysis-MPS-Explore

South Dakota Woman Seeks Answers In Friend’s Death

KEYSTONE, S.D. (AP) – A South Dakota woman continues to seek answers four years after the death of her friend.

67-year-old Nancy Herman has refused to give up hope that she’ll find out what happened to her friend, 38-year-old Meshell Will.

Herman says she met Will in February 2013, while Will volunteered at a battered women shelter. She had last spoken to Will two days before she was last seen in Keystone.

Now, Herman regularly calls case investigators to check for updates, and has also saved over $1,000 for a reward.

Earlier this month, Herman and Will’s aunt sought help from the Vidocq Society, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit. The nonprofit provides free assistance to police investigating cold-case homicides.

Read more at: http://www.kdlt.com/2017/08/25/south-dakota-woman-seeks-answers-friends-death/

‘Granny’ on a mission to solve friend’s death

Taped on the office wall of The Brookside Motel in Keystone is a poster announcing a reward for information on the 2013 death of Meshell Will.

The poster is evidence that four years after the Custer woman died, she has not been forgotten, and the hunt for information about her suspicious death goes on.

Will’s badly decomposed body was found off Iron Mountain Road in Keystone on Aug. 31, 2013. Will, 38, was last seen in Keystone seven days earlier, not far from where her body was discovered in a wooded area near the road’s famous “pigtail” bridges.

Police are still trying to figure out how she died — and if she was murdered. Meanwhile, her friend, Nancy Herman, has refused to give up hope that she can find out what happened to Will.

Herman, 67, put up the poster at the motel and in various places around Keystone and Custer. She said she has

Read more at: http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/granny-on-a-mission-to-solve-friend-s-death/article_846659f9-1c7c-5ae1-86c9-372554f73565.html

Twenty-five years after Tammy Zywicki’s murder, victim’s mother hasn’t given up hope

Two years ago, authorities hinted of a possible breakthrough in the Tammy Zywicki case — but no one was arrested and the case remains unsolved.

But on the 25th anniversary of her daughter’s disappearance and murder, Tammy’s mother said she’s not as frustrated or unhappy as she was in the first few years after the killing. Tammy Zywicki was traveling to Iowa’s Grinnell College when she disappeared in 1992. Her car was last seen near La Salle and her body was discovered days later in Missouri.

Joanne Zywicki, now living in Florida, said Tuesday “there’s nothing definite to report,” even after a new lead was reportedly developed in 2015.

“The only thing that’s different is there seems to be more activity than there was 20 years ago,” Zywicki observed in an approving tone.

Asked to elaborate, she said there seems to be renewed interest and urgency in her daughter’s case. As was the case

Read more at: http://www.newstrib.com/free/twenty-five-years-after-tammy-zywicki-s-murder-victim-s/article_373a598a-877b-11e7-b649-03607ad4983a.html

Police seek tips in 25-year-old Zywicki case

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Read more at: http://www.mywebtimes.com/news/local/police-seek-tips-in--year-old-zywicki-case/article_4b5dbd9c-8e62-5824-8620-c4d82dba81ec.html

25 years after Tammy Zywicki kidnapping, murder, authorities seek new leads

The day before the 25th anniversary of Tammy Zywicki’s kidnapping and murder, the FBI and Illinois State Police announced they are using modern technology to retest evidence in her killing.

Zywicki was a 21-year-old college student traveling from her New Jersey home to her last year in college in Grinnell, Iowa. She’d left Evanston, where she dropped off her brother at Northwestern University, but never arrived at Grinnell College.

She was last seen with her car on Interstate 80 at mile marker 83 in LaSalle County between 3 and 4 p.m. Aug. 23, 1992.

Her car, a 1985 white Pontiac T1000, was found by an Illinois State Police trooper and marked as abandoned. Nine days later, her body was found hundreds of miles away along Interstate 44 in rural Lawrence County, Mo., wrapped in a red blanket that was sealed with duct tape. She had been stabbed eight times and

Read more at: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-tammy-zywicki-murder-25-years-met-20170823-story.html