Officials: 'Major development' in Strangler case

Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) — Advances in DNA technology have led to a breakthrough in the last of the 1960s slayings attributed to the Boston Strangler, Massachusetts law enforcement officials said Thursday.

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis, Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley and state Attorney General Martha Coakley have scheduled a news conference to discuss what they call a "major development" in the nearly 50-year-old slaying of Mary Sullivan.

Sullivan, 19, was found strangled in her Boston apartment in January 1964. Sullivan, who had moved from her Cape Cod home to Boston just three days before her death, is considered the strangler's last victim.

Eleven Boston-area women between the ages of 19 and 85 were sexually assaulted and killed between 1962 and 1964, crimes that terrorized the region and made national headlines.

Albert DeSalvo, married with children, a blue collar worker and Army veteran, confessed to the 11 Boston Strangler murders, as well as two others.

Represented by F. Lee Bailey, DeSalvo was never convicted of the Boston Strangler killings. He was sentenced to life in prison for a series of armed robberies and sexual assaults and was stabbed to death in the state's maximum security prison in Walpole in 1973 — but not before he recanted his confession.

"The miracle of science and DNA evidence" has allowed investigators to identify her probable killer, police said in a statement.

Sullivan is the only victim for which DNA evidence is available.

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