Thursday, March 27, 2014

LIFE SENTENCE FOR MAN CONVICTED OF RAPE, AGGRAVATED ASSAULT

 IN COLD CASE DEATH OF WOMAN  

DNA Evidence in Similar Case Crucial Link to Solving Crime 

Atlanta– A man convicted in connection with a seven year old ‘cold’ case death and assault of an Atlanta woman has been sentenced to life in prison.  Jurors returned guilty verdicts Friday against 33-year-old David Hinkle on charges of rape and aggravated assault but failed to convict on murder charges against the defendant.

On August 28, 2006, the partially nude body of the victim was discovered next to a building in an industrial area on Humphries Street in Southwest Atlanta. The victim had been strangled. Detectives gathered DNA evidence from the scene which was a positive match to DNA evidence collected from another rape victim who was attacked less than two miles away from the crime scene earlier that year. While that rape victim survived, she was unable to identify her attacker.  With no leads, and no suspect the cases turned cold.

In 2009, detectives got a fresh lead with the arrest of David Hinkle for charges unrelated to this murder. Once his DNA was placed into a database, it matched the DNA evidence recovered from the murder victim and the rape victim. Hinkle was indicted in December of 2013.

During a sentencing hearing this morning before Fulton County Superior Court Judge Henry Newkirk Hinkle received a maximum sentence of life plus 20 years in prison.

The case was prosecuted by Chief Senior Assistant District Attorney Lance Cross with assistance from ADA Rodney Atreopersaud and DA Investigator Terence Wise. Detective Brett Zimbrick of the Atlanta Police Department led both the initial and cold case investigations.

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