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Home » Man Charged Over 1966 Illinois Murder After DNA Breakthrough

Man Charged Over 1966 Illinois Murder After DNA Breakthrough

A 79-year-old man has been charged with murder of an 18-year-old woman who was stabbed more than 120 times in her suburban Chicago home almost six decades ago.

Karen Snider was found dead by her husband Paul Snider on the night of 12 November 1966 after he returned late to their house in Calumet City, Illinois.

James Barbier was arrested at his home in Missouri on Monday and charged with first-degree murder.

Police reopened the case in 2022 and sent items from the scene, including the victim’s dress and blood-stained bedsheet, for testing, according to Sky News’ US partner network, NBC News.

The blood matched Barbier’s DNA and following his arrest he was extradited to Illinois.

Mrs Snider was stabbed about 125 times, according to the medical examiner, while her two-month-old daughter was in a crib, unharmed.

Barbier, who worked with her husband at a railroad yard, was arrested in 1966 but never charged.

“The defendant arrived home and appeared nervous and was observed by her to have cuts on him, blood on him and blood on his clothes,” the state attorney’s office said.

“The defendant went inside their home right away, took off his clothes and put them in the washing machine.”

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The state’s attorney office said Barbier was released on Thursday after prosecutors did not seek to keep him in jail because of his age and “physical infirmity”.

But he is prohibited from leaving Missouri or Illinois and was required to give up his passport and firearms.

It was not clear if Barbier has an attorney and he faces another court hearing on 21 May.