Virginia police: Forensic evidence links 2 cases

Hannah Elizabeth Graham
This undated file photo provided by the Charlottesville, Va., Police Department shows missing University of Virginia student Hannah Elizabeth Graham. (AP Photo/Charlottesville, Va., Police Department, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — They both were walking alone, separated from their friends late at night on or near the University of Virginia campus. One was found dead nearly five years ago. The other is still missing.
And now police believe they have found a link between the 2009 slaying of Morgan Harrington and the Sept. 13 disappearance of Hannah Graham: Forensic evidence found in the arrest of a hospital worker and former taxi driver who fled the state when he learned police wanted to question him about the Graham case.
Jesse L. Matthew Jr., 32, was arrested on a beach near Galveston, Texas, last week and was brought back to Virginia to face a charge of abduction with intent to defile — or sexually molest — the 18-year-old sophomore from northern Virginia. If convicted, he could face up to life in prison. His bond hearing is set for Thursday.
Virginia State Police said Monday that Matthew’s arrest provided a new forensic link for investigators to pursue in the Harrington investigation. In a written statement, they called it a “significant break” but did not elaborate on the precise nature of the evidence and said they would make no further comment. Charlottesville police and Matthew’s attorney, James Camblos, did not return messages.
Harrington’s mother, Gil Harrington, issued an appeal to Matthew on Tuesday during an appearance on NBC’s “Today” show.
“I would like to appeal to him to please give the family information where Hannah is. We need to find Hannah,” she said.
She said police have not given her family any information that has not been publicly released.

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