Police hope DNA can help solve 50-year-old crime - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Police hope DNA can help solve 50-year-old crime

APPLETON, Wis. (AP) - Winnebago County authorities are hoping advancements in DNA testing technology can help them solve a murder that happened 50 years ago.

In 1963, Wayne Pratt was stabbed 53 times at a gas station along U.S. Highway 41 between Neenah and Oshkosh. There were suspects, but authorities have yet to catch his killer.

The Appleton Post-Crescent reports DNA testing wasn't an option back then. But Winnebago County Sheriff John Matz says his department is now preparing to send evidence from the case to the state Crime Lab for testing. The hope is that DNA might link suspects to the crime.

Brian O'Keefe is administrator of law enforcement services for the Wisconsin Department of Justice. He says DNA testing is the No. 1 reason why cold cases are getting solved.

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