Glenn Williams was arrested Thursday, for a crime committed on June 10, 1978.
At the time, Phoenix Police found Fernando Calleros and a woman in the bed of a pickup truck in the area of 32nd street and Broadway. 23-year-old Calleros had been beaten to death while the woman was beaten and had been sexually assaulted. She survived the attack.
Evidence was collected, processed and in January 1979, Williams was taken into custody. He was interviewed by detectives and despite denying involvement, he was booked into jail and charged with the crime.
The charges were eventually “turned down” due to a lack of evidence and Williams was released from jail. Detectives had done all they could and exhausted all the technology available to them at that time.
In 2019, the case was reexamined by the Phoenix Police Department Cold Case Homicide Squad. Thanks to advances in technology, they were able to link Williams to the crime and arrest him on first degree murder and sexual assault charges.
“We’re constantly looking for ways to use current technologies and new approaches to being able to combine best science with best evidence. So that we can provide some answers to our investigators that will help further the investigation to a successful resolution.” said Phoenix Crime Lab Administrator Jody Wolf.
“42 years ago, those detectives did a great job obtaining, and packaging, and maintaining it (the evidence). The scientists were able to use the evidence, test it with today’s technology, and it identified Williams as the suspect in this brutal attack,” said Phoenix Police Sergeant Tommy Thompson.
Wolf stated that “The field of forensic DNA testing continues to advance at a rapid rate. It opens up lots of doors for us to revisit these cases that we never would’ve been able to test previously.”
Wolf loves what science is able to do in helping to solve crimes. “It’s a huge reward and a huge experience for our analysts to participate in these cases and be able to answer those questions,” said Wolf. “We have an amazing team. They are incredible professionals, incredible scientists, and that’s what we love is science.”
“This is an example of the quality work that the men and women of the Phoenix Police Department do.” Thompson said.