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Police have DNA evidence in Sherry Black murder

By KSL.com | Posted - Mar. 28, 2011 at 5:00 p.m.


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SOUTH SALT LAKE — A $50,000 reward and new information about the slaying of the mother-in-law of Larry H. Miller Group CEO Greg Miller were announced Monday.

Police revealed that DNA evidence was collected from the crime scene where Sherry Black was found dead. South Salt Lake Police Lt. Dwayne Ruth said the blood evidence was likely from the hand of the killer, who is believed to be a male.

"Based on the evidence at the scene," Ruth said, "we know that this suspect was injured and we believe, again based on the evidence at the crime scene, that his hand was the injured part of his body."


Based on the evidence at the scene, we know that this suspect was injured and we believe ... that his hand was the injured part of his body.

–Lt. Dwayne Ruth, SSLPD


#ruth_quote

Investigators did not take any questions during the brief press conference Monday and did not say whether they had attempted to match the DNA in any national crime databases or what the results were.

Detectives are still looking for the person or people responsible for killing Black, a 64-year-old book dealer found dead Nov. 30 at the family's business, B&W Billiards and Books, 3466 S. 700 East. Police say she was brutally beaten and stabbed to death.

In an attempt to help generate new leads, police also announced Monday a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the slaying.

Heidi Miller, Black's daughter, said she hoped the reward would prompt someone to come forward.

"I miss my mom so much, I can't even explain the pain I feel," she said. "We miss her every minute of every day."

At the end of reading her prepared comments, in which she took no questions from the press, Miller made a plea.


If the person who killed her is listening, please turn yourself in.

–Heidi Miller, Black's daughter


#miller_quote

"If you have any information, please help us," Miller said. "If the person who killed her is listening, please turn yourself in."

Now that police have revealed they have DNA evidence, Ruth said it would be easy for detectives to eliminate suspects and re-emphasized Miller's message of asking people to step forward with information.

Miller says her mother had a love for rare LDS books. She says she started collecting them as a hobby in her 30s and that the hobby later turned into a career.

Black's husband found her body in the book shop on Nov. 30 of last year. Police say she was stabbed and beaten to death, but there was no sign of a robbery inside the store.

Earlier, police had announced that an Armani Exchange belt, with a 36-38 inch waist, was recovered from the crime scene. The belt had "AX" on the buckle and the number "323" on the inside of the buckle.

Anyone with information on the case can call police at 801-412-3633 or send an email to crimetips@southsaltlakecity.com.

Black's case has been profiled on America's Most Wanted. Billboards asking the public, "Do you know my killer" have been established at several places around the Salt Lake Valley.

-----

Story written with contributions from Shara Park, Pat Reavy and the KSL News team.

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