Nine years after a University of North Carolina student was found dead in her off-campus apartment, a man has been arrested in connection to the murder, authorities said Thursday.
Miguel Enrique Oliveras, 28, has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Faith Hedgepeth, who was 19 at the time. Oliveras was taken into custody without incident and is being held at the Durham County Detention Center without bond, CBS affiliate WBTV reported.
Hedgepeth was found in the bedroom of her Chapel Hill apartment on September 7, 2012. An autopsy revealed she died from a severe beating to her head, WBTV reported.
When police responded to the scene, they found a note that read "I'm not stupid" followed by the words "b****" and "jealous," officials said. The note was written on a fast food bag.
Although investigators recovered DNA from the crime scene, including from semen collected through a sexual assault kit, no one had been charged in connection to the case, according to WBTV.
Connie Hedgepeth, Faith's mother, spoke after the arrest was made Thursday. "When I got the news this morning, I didn't do anything but cry and thank God and praise God," she said. "When I cried, it was tears of joy, tears of relief that someone had been arrested in her case."
North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein said police detectives and state bureau of investigation agents conducted thousands of interviews as part of the investigation. Connie Hedgepeth thanked the Chapel Hill Police Department and the State Bureau of Investigation for their work on the case.
Governor Roy Cooper praised law enforcement for their work on the case Thursday. "Thanks to the NC State Bureau of Investigation, the State Crime Lab, Chapel Hill Police and other law enforcement who worked relentlessly and have never given up on solving the murder of UNC student Faith Hedgepeth more than 9 years ago," Cooper tweeted.