Published November 17, 2014
A man accused of holding a schoolgirl captive for days in his basement before killing her and dumping her body in Michigan in 1967 will go on trial again, just weeks after jurors couldn't come up with a verdict in his first trial.
A judge on Monday said the second trial will begin Oct. 11.
Robert Bowman's first trial ended last week with jurors saying they had been unable to reach a unanimous decision following several weeks of testimony and 12 hours of deliberations.
Prosecutors charged Bowman, now 75, with murder in the four-decade-old killing after saying that new DNA evidence tied Bowman to the crime. He has pleaded not guilty and faces up to life in prison if he's convicted. He has remained in jail since his arrest three years ago.
Prosecutors and a defense attorney wouldn't comment after the hearing Monday because of a gag order in the case.
Both sides met behind closed doors with Lucas County Judge Gene Zmuda before the hearing. The judge said he expects jury selection to take longer this time because of the publicity during the first trial.
Prosecutors say Bowman snatched 14-year-old Eileen Adams, a high school freshman, after she got off a bus and sexually assaulted her before killing her. Her body was found in southern Michigan six weeks after she disappeared. She had been tied up with telephone and drapery cords and a nail had been driven into her head.
Adams was either strangled or died from a blow to the head that cracked her skull, prosecutors said.
During the trial, Bowman's ex-wife told jurors she had found the girl alive, naked and tied up in the basement after the girl disappeared just before Christmas 1967.
Margaret Bowman said she ran upstairs and her husband confronted her, saying he had to kill the girl. He also threatened to kill his wife and their newborn daughter if she told anyone, she said. That same night, she testified, Bowman made her go with him as he dumped the body.
Defense attorney Peter Rost tried to cast doubt on Margaret Bowman's account. He said she waited 14 years to tell her story to police and that she stayed with Bowman for 11 years and moved with him to three different states before leaving when his business failed.
Detectives first tried to link him to the slaying in the early `80s, when Margaret Bowman first came forward, but they said they didn't have enough evidence to bring charges until a cold case squad reopened the investigation five years ago.
Bowman had been a successful businessman before disappearing in the 1980s into a life on the streets in Florida and California. Police arrested him near Palm Springs, Calif., in 2008.