Police Say They’ve Solved 1976 Killing of Chicago-Area Teen

By The Associated Press

LISLE, Ill.—Police near Chicago say advances in DNA testing have helped them solve the case of a 16-year-old girl who was strangled in 1976.

Lisle police said in a Facebook post that they would detail the new findings in the death of Pamela Maurer during a news conference later Monday, which was 44 years to the day that she was reported missing.

“The Lisle PD has never forgotten about Pam, and have opened the case several times over the years to try to bring her killer to justice,” the department said. “Due to new DNA advancements, and an unwavering commitment to solve the case, we are pleased to report that we now have an answer!”

DNA Testing
A lab worker transfers solutions from one tube to another as the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner hosts DNA Extraction demonstration to unveil groundbreaking technology allowing OCME to test degraded DNA samples in New York on Sept. 6, 2018. (Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images)

Officials from the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office are also expected to speak at the news conference.

The girl was reported missing on Jan. 13, 1976, by her parents after she did not return that night to her home in nearby Woodridge. A motorist found her body the next morning after spotting a purse lying along a road in Lisle.

Police said at the time that the girl’s body may have been placed there by her killer in the hopes of making her death appear to be a hit-and-run. But after the coroner determined that bruises on her neck indicated she had been strangled, police concluded that a rubber hose found near her body had been used to kill her.