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article imageFlorida authorities make arrest in 21-year-old homicide case

By Leigh Goessl     Jan 10, 2012 in Crime
Sanford - Authorities in Florida have cracked a 21-year-old homicide case that had long gone unsolved.
The suspect was found after a routine computer comparison picked up a DNA match, said the Seminole County Sheriff's Office.
The Orlando Sentinel reported police say a match was made from the DNA found at the site of a 1991 brutal killing with DNA recently submitted by a tax-cheater.
In Florida, all felony convictions must submit DNA samples, and this has been in practice since 2005.
On Jan. 31, 1991, 50-year-old Betty Clair Foster was killed as she worked alone as a receptionist in a computer store in Seminole County. Her body was discovered after a customer noticed blood on the store's doorway and then saw her body.
When police examined the site of the homicide, the door was unlocked, shades were down, it was not a sexual attack, and robbery was not a motive since her purse was intact and no money was missing. Yet the killing was brutal, with Foster being stabbed multiple times in the chest and neck.
Police were never able to solve the homicide case and it went cold, despite a $5,000 reward placed by Foster's father and police asking for tips from the public. Several samples were collected at the time of the murder and 11 years later, a Wuestoff Laboratory analyst found DNA in five samples, reported Orlando Sentinel.
David Lee Hedrick, 50, a computer and audio-visual hardware salesman, has been charged with first-degree murder in this case. In October 2011 Hedrick was convicted of a tax-related crime which was a felony. In November he was sentenced to 15 years probation.
In accordance with Florida law, he reported last Thurs. to submit his DNA and the computer detected a match the same day. Hedrick's samples matched the DNA found in the crime scene's five blood samples.
WFTV 9 reported police are not saying whether or not Hedrick has confessed and no motive has been identified.
Hedrick briefly had worked at the computer store part-time for about six weeks, the Orlando Sentinel noted in their report.
"Time and technology caught up with the killer," Seminole County Sheriff Don Eslinger said. "This case may have been cold, but our investigation never stopped, and now justice can finally be sought for Betty Foster." (courtesy of MyFox Orlando)
Hedrick is being held at the John E. Polk Correctional facility with no bond.
WESH reported the family, who would not speak on camera without permission of Hedrick's attorney, says this arrest is a mistake.
More about florida authorities, 21 year old homicide case, Seminole county, David hedrick, Dna testing
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