• DNA cracks 32 year old cold case; killer now dead too

    SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) - Authorities say DNA has helped them determine the man who killed a neighbor in South Carolina 32 years ago is now dead himself.

    Spartanburg Sheriff Chuck Wright says 44-year-old James Larry Smith was attacked and beaten with a hammer in his home in December 1987 and remained in a coma until he died four months later.

    Wright told the Herald-Journal of Spartanburg that DNA from the crime scene was recently linked to Smith's neighbor, Roger Switzer. The sheriff says Switzer died of a heart attack in 2008.

    Wright says Switzer's death means investigators may never know why he allegedly beat Smith with a hammer.

    The sheriff told the newspaper he will release more details at a news conference in a few days.


    Information from: Herald-Journal, http://www.goupstate.com/

    Next Up: