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Murder of Righteous Brothers Bill Medley's ex-wife solved after 40 years

31 January 2017
Murder of Righteous Brothers Bill Medley's ex-wife solved after 40 years

Sheriff McDonnell and LA County Homicide Bureau detectives announced the solving of the 1976 murder case of Karen Klaas, mother of two and the ex-wife of singer Bill Medley of The Righteous Brothers.

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Troyer, who had been suspected of committing several other sexual assaults in California, was shot and killed by police after escaping from a California prison in 1982, McDonnell said.

Officials are expected to release information about how they solved the 1976 rape and killing of the ex-wife of Righteous Brothers singer Bill Medley.

The 32-year-old was attacked January 30, 1976 as she returned to her home in the Hermosa Beach neighborhood, was sexually assaulted and strangled with her pantyhose. The 32-year-old was sexually assaulted, strangled with her pantyhose and never regained consciousness. He was identified by a familial DNA search, a technology in which investigators scour law enforcement databases to find possible relatives of an individual suspected of a crime.

Kenneth Troyer was identified as the killer in the press conference held by officials from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department on Monday afternoon.

The case has remained unsolved for four decades despite working up a DNA profile of the killer based on forensic evidence found at the crime scene.

A sheriff's spokeswoman would not say Friday evening whether investigators had formally made an arrest in the case and declined to identify the suspect. She died a few days later at the hospital.

Officials would not identify the relative and would only say the sample they used was in a state database of convicted felons. She said she hopes the identification of Troyer brings closure to Klaas' family. "It's been a long road, and we're just thrilled that we can close the book on this", Medley said, adding that he "became numb" when he initially learned the suspect's identity had been discovered.