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SALT LAKE CITY — A 55-year-old man was arrested in Nebraska after DNA evidence linked him to the 1982 death of 72-year-old Wilhelmina Reid in Salt Lake City.
Bryan H. Reed was arrested and booked into Dakota County Jail in Nebraska, and faces charges of murder and aggravated burglary in the woman’s death, South Sioux City police said in a statement released Tuesday. Reed is awaiting extradition to Utah.
The woman was found dead on Aug. 18, 1982, in her home, located at 959 W. California Ave., the Deseret News reported in 1989. Reid was reportedly beaten during a burglary and theft and had been sexually assaulted.
Reid’s cause of death was blunt force trauma, police said.
Shortly after the 72-year-old’s death, Reed moved to Nebraska, investigators say.
Reed, who was 17 years old at the time of the woman’s death, was first interviewed by Salt Lake City police about his alleged involvement in December of 2018.
At that same time, South Sioux City police in Nebraska served a search warrant to collect Reed’s DNA, which later linked him to the death. Police determined he was in the area at the time of Reid's death, according to a Wednesday news release from the Salt Lake City Police Department.
After DNA analysis and fingerprints connected Reed to the woman’s slaying, Reed allegedly confessed to Salt Lake City investigators, South Sioux City police said.
“These are cases that we want to get solved. Cold cases are just as important to our detectives as are current cases and we are constantly reviewing them," Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown said in the news release. "If we have leads, we exhaust them. The implication of being able to solve these cases is immense. Both for the victim’s family and for the community to know that a killer has been caught. We are proud of the hard work put in by our investigators to solve this case.”
Contributing: Jacob Klopfenstein, KSL.com
Correction: This article previously stated that Reid was found dead on Aug. 18, 1984. That date has been corrected. The article also said Reed was arrested in Iowa. That has been corrected to Nebraska.