Sheriff's office partners with DNA firm to search for identity of man murdered in 1978

Donations needed for DNA test
Posted at 9:48 PM, Dec 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-01 22:48:36-05

LA VERGNE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Rutherford County Sheriff's Office has partnered with a DNA firm in hopes of finding the identity of a man who was killed 42 years ago. And officials need donations from the community to make it happen.

The body of an unidentified was found shot and partially burned Aug. 1, 1978 at Poole Knob Campground near La Vergne.

An autopsy report described the man as being in his late 30s and 5-feet-10 tall. He had medium-length, brown hair with a receding hairline and a reddish-brown and gray beard.

Detective Richard Brinkley and other detectives followed multiple leads without success. Searching DNA through public sources is one of the ways Brinkley tried to locate the man’s family without any results. But a forensic DNA analyst informed Brinkley about Othram, a private DNA laboratory that recovers human DNA to solve murder cases.

The testing costs $5,000. $1,000 has already been paid, but Brinkley hopes people will donate the remaining $4,000.

“Try to put yourself in the shoes of the family who is missing this man,” Brinkley said. “Your donations can help a grieving family get answers they’ve sought for 42 years,” Brinkley said in a press release.

For more information on the cold case, click here.