Kevin Bernard Smith Jr is charged with the bloody shooting Rupert Thompson and the attempted killing of Thompson’s wife, Dorothy in their LA home back in 1994.
The pair were nearly asleep in their ground floor bedroom when Dorothy Thompson woke to find a gunman at the foot of their bed after hearing some glass shatter.
The man then blasted her in the torso before her husband got up and struggled with the thief in their front garden but he managed to escape.
Rupert Thompson, then 73, later died and Dorothy Thompson was partially paralyzed in her right shoulder.
LAPD Detective Steven Castro refused to give up and after reviewing the cold case in 2009 he decided to give the blood DNA evidence another try.
He said: “There were a couple of drops of blood not id’d. I requested it be submitted again, with the advances in DNA.”
His attempt paid off and he got the hit on Smith, who was in a Mississippi prison on an unrelated drug conviction at the time, from a national database in August 2010.
He has since pled not guilty to charges including murder, attempted murder and robbery.
Castro added: “I am happy that I was fortunate enough to give Dorothy Thompson the news."
Now, he said he hopes that she will be able to see Smith, who is currently undergoing a psychiatric evaluation judged in court.