Theresa Corley: DNA found

The cold case of Theresa M. Corley/Massachusetts Gov.

Theresa M. Corley/Massachusetts Gov.

In April 2016, I wrote that Theresa Corley‘s case needed a review with modern technology. It has been done.

In May 2017, the authorities exhumed Theresa’s body. They collected nine and a half fingernails. The goal of course, looking for DNA.

Theresa was only 19 years old on Dec. 6, 1978 when she was raped and murdered. She worked to finance her college education and wanted to a pediatrician.

If Theresa fought back there is a good chance the attacker’s DNA is under her nails. If so, this DNA sample could produce a profile that can be compared to profiles in national databases. Whether that is possible depends on the number and the condition of the cells found.

The DNA that the technicians found didn’t come from under her finger nails. I have not been able to find yet if anything was found underneath her nails however, the DNA found came from her jeans. It appears to be a complete profile.

It was a small semen sample and police waited a good while to be sure that the DNA technology would be able to handle such a small sample. Earlier technology might have used up the entire sample and may not have given them any results. Their patience, as trying as it was for them and for all who care, paid off.

State police say a group of men gave Theresa a ride to a Franklin apartment, where she was sexually assaulted. Theresa was last seen hitchhiking, a mile away from her home in Bellingham early the next morning.

Theresa Corley’s nude body was found on Dec. 8 on the northbound side of Route 495 in Bellingham, Massachusetts. Her jacket and jeans were thrown next to her. Now after all these years, we have a good chance to find out who was responsible for the rape-murder of Theresa Corley.

Remember that just like in the case of Patricia Smith the prosecution can charge this person as a John Doe.