Apache Junction Jane Doe similar to 1992 serial killer victims
APACHE JUNCTION, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Apache Junction police say they are looking at all possible leads, including the possibility a 15-year-old girl, whose body was found in the desert, was the victim of a serial killer.
Police and the DNA Doe Project used genetic genealogy to identify the teenager as Melody Harrison, whose family reported her missing in June of 1992. Her body was discovered in the desert south of the US 60, near Idaho and Baseline, in August of 1992. It took three decades to identify her. The DNA Doe Project used databases from GEDMatch Pro and FamilyTreeDNA.com in its analysis.
During the time of Harrison’s disappearance, two serial killers were actively abducting and murdering young women in the Phoenix area.
The first, Scott Lehr, was convicted of murdering three women whose ages ranged from 19 to 40 years old. Lehr was also charged with several rapes and brutal attacks on women. He was known as the Babyseat Rapist because surviving victims said he had a baby seat in his vehicle. That crime spree occurred in 1991 and 1992.
Bryan Patrick Miller was convicted earlier this year in the murders of Angela Brosso, who was 23, and Melanie Bernas, who was 15. Brosso was murdered in November of 1992. Bernas was murdered in September of 1993.
But Miller is also a suspect or investigative lead in the disappearance of Brandy Myers, who was 13 when she vanished in May of 1992, and in the murder of Shannon Aumock, a 16-year-old, whose body was found in May of 1992.
Miller is considered a person of interest in the murder of Adrienne Salinas, who disappeared in Tempe in 2013 and whose body was discovered later that year in Apache Junction.
“We will definitely follow up on all the leads we have, including these two,” said Stephanie Bourgeois, who is a crime scene technician with Apache Junction Police and is credited with re-opening and re-investigating the case that led to the identification of Harrison.
Police say they are also hoping to speak to Harrison’s friends as they begin the process of trying to solve her murder. Both Miller and Lerh were sentenced to death and are currently housed on death row.
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