Montgomery County Police solved a 25-year-old rape case Monday with the matching of a DNA sample to a convicted serial rapist.
The DNA matched a national database called Combined DNA Index System (CODIS). CODIS’ mission is to provide support to federal, state and local laboratories.
The victim was 20 years old at the time and was awakened at 4 a.m. in her Silver Spring apartment by the defendant, William Joseph Trice. He allegedly gained access through a window and raped her. The woman now lives in Anne Arundel County, MD.
The DNA also matched two other cold rape cases in Anne Arundel County. In 2008, those rape cases from 1988 were solved through CODIS.
In 1988, the first known victim returned home from work around 3 a.m. from a local restaurant. The defendant was accused of coming into her home and raping her. Later on that year, in December, another woman coming home around the same time was attacked and raped outside of her home.
The New York State Police helped to secure Trice’s DNA evidence.
In 2005, Anne Arundel County Police received information that a DNA profile from their cold cases matched a CODIS search. But police officials were still in a bind, there wasn’t a specific DNA profile match on record to help identify a suspect.
Evidence from one of the rape cases was reviewed a few years later and fingerprint was recovered from the scene of an August 1988 rape. The print matched that of a known individual in the latent fingerprint database. It helped authorities match it to a name.
That sample was taken from the suspect by New York police authorities during a traffic stop. The fingerprint matched that of the DNA profile taken from evidence in the 1988 Anne Arundel County unsolved rapes.
Montgomery County Police is encouraging anyone with information about the Montgomery County case or possible related cases in Montgomery County is asked to contact the Major Crimes Division at 240-773-5070.