SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Authorities have made an arrest in a murder that dates back to 1991.
Hampden County District Attorney Mark Mastroianni says that they have arrested Faustino Diaz of Springfield and have charged him with aggravated rape and murder of 90-year-old Myrtle Marrett.
Marrett was found dead in her Springfield apartment in January 1991.
Mastroianni adds that new forensic analysis of the evidence in the case helped crack the case open and lead to this arrest. “From the DNA profile of suspects, we did comparisons against the profile we had developed from the bodily fluids found at the scene of the murder and I can tell you the DNA connection in this case was to Mr. Diaz,” says Mastroianni.
Mastroianni says Diaz worked in the maintenance department of the elderly housing complex at the time of the murder.
Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney recalls the impact the murder had on the neighborhood. “I remember the tragedy of that neighborhood, people in fear after that, and the special patrols we had in and around there, because it was a defenseless elderly woman in her home,” says Sgt. Delaney.
Delaney and the D.A. credit the good work of two Springfield detectives in finally seeing a breakthrough. “Lt. Thomas Kennedy and Tony Pioggia, those guys have been around the block, interviewing people, going up there, beating the bushes, and then getting DNA evidence and matching it up,” says Delaney.
Diaz pleaded not guilty in Springfield District Court Tuesday morning. He is being held without the right to bail and is due back in court in February.