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  • Pasadena Police Department

  • Unsolved Homicide Unit

    The Pasadena Police Department recently created an Unsolved Homicide Unit. The department has over 100 unsolved cases dating as far back as 1960. In the past detectives assigned to Homicide Assaults were responsible to review unsolved cases in addition to their regular duties. This method proved ineffective as active investigations consumed these detectives time leaving the unsolved cases with little time for follow-up.

    Crime scene management and advances in technology make a number of those previously unsolved cases now potentially solvable. DNA recognition, advanced fingerprinting, and ballistics identification, all once unavailable, can now be used to help to review unsolved case evidence. Every unsolved case in our files will be reviewed and those cases with the best available evidence will receive high priority.

    Since the formation of the unit, we have already made one arrest. In September 2007, we arrested and charged a former Pasadena resident with murder in a 1987 rape and murder of an elderly Pasadena woman at a board and care house. The case was solved with DNA evidence. Although the suspect was the primary person of interest when the original attack occurred, there was not enough evidence to prove the case. The case remained open and the suspect remained at large for nearly twenty years. This suspect is now awaiting court hearings and an eventual trial for the murder.

    Not all the unsolved cases will be resolved this easily. Many cases have little evidence or few witnesses and leads. Often simply finding surviving family members of these victims is as challenging as solving the case itself. Family members are encouraged to call the unit and check on the status of their loved one’s case. Information on any of these cases, or any criminal matter, is always welcome from the public. The public is asked to contact the unit if they have information about any crime and all contacts will be confidential.

    The Pasadena Police Department understands that these investigations have never been considered “cold cases” to the victim’s surviving family. And now by combining new technology with good old fashioned detective work, coupled with leads and assistance from the public, the Unsolved Homicide Unit looks to solve and prosecute the responsible suspects and help in the process of closure for each of the victim’s families.

    If you have any information please contact the Pasadena Police Department, Detective Section at (626) 744-4522