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KCKPD set to turn over 1989 cold case

Posted at 9:42 PM, May 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-29 23:11:51-04

Sarah DeLeon’s body was found stabbed to death on December 29, 1989.

Detectives who were investigating the cold case murder of the 18-year-old believe they know who her killer is and expect to hand the case over to prosecutors in the next few weeks.

The case was reopened in July 2014 when new technology became available to analyze forensic evidence.

“The investigation into Sarah’s death is almost complete and we will be submitting the case to the Wyandotte County District Attorney in the forthcoming weeks,” said Kansas City, Kansas police Detective Scott Howard.

Investigators are asking for the public's help

There is a piece of the puzzle that detectives are still wanting the public’s help with.

They are hoping someone remembers seeing something unusual at the then American Inn Motel on February 13, 1987, more than two years before DeLeon’s death.

“The suspect and accomplice may have been involved in an abduction by deception,” said Howard. “Which a victim was tricked into leaving her home in a limousine and was taken to the American Inn Motel in the area of 78th and I-70.”

Police say this information could help with the prosecution of DeLeon’s murderer.

“We believe that we can show a pattern of behavior that links this to the DeLeon homicide and other crimes and things as well,” said Howard.

Connection to other cold cases in the Kansas City metro area

Aside from the possible 1987 kidnapping, detectives say Missouri police believe Deleon’s case is connected to the 1994 Independence, Missouri murder of Diana Ault.

Previous story: Independence police reopen woman's 1994 homicide

Howard told 41 Action News: “We have also determined that the suspect and an accomplice have been involved in multiple incidences involving the harassment and intimidation of romantic rivals.”

The DeLeon family reacts to new developments

In a statement, Sarah’s DeLeon’s brother Matt DeLeon says in part:

“It has been way too long and it is time for justice to be served on those responsible for my sister's death.”