BOSTON – Boston police say they have solved the murder of a young woman nearly 40 years after it happened.
Authorities said they used DNA evidence to identify Michael Sumpter as the man who raped and strangled 24-year-old Mary Lee McLain after breaking into the victim's Beacon Hill apartment in December 1973.
Sumpter, who died in prison in 2001, was also recently linked by DNA to the 1972 rape and murder of 23-year-old Ellen Rutchick in Boston.
Both cases had gone unsolved for decades.
Suffolk District Attorney Dan Conley says he hopes Thursday's announcement will bring some closure to McLain's family. Investigators do not believe Sumpter knew the victim.
Sumpter died of cancer while serving a 15-20 year sentence for the rape of another woman in 1975.