Albert Did It

23 Jul



For years, controversy has surrounded the famous Boston Strangler case. Albert DeSalvo, who was killed in prison in 1973, confessed to around a dozen murders, then recanted. One of the cases at the center of the controversy was the murder of 19-year-old Mary Sullivan. Many felt Albert was responsible; others said no. The controversy can now be put to rest.




The Boston Police Crime Lab tested DNA obtained from Mary’s remains and then using Familial DNA techniques compared it with a fraternal nephew of DeSalvo’s. The results suggested that a relative of the nephew’s could be the killer. That is, it could be Albert. This was enough probable cause to obtain an exhumation order to retrieve Albert’s DNA. A match was then made between his DNA and that found in the corpse of Mary Sullivan.

Albert did it.

Familial DNA also played a role in the identification of the Grim Sleeper as Lonnie Franklin


4 responses to “Albert Did It

  1. Cheryl B. Dale

    July 24, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    So good for the family when an old crime can be cleared up with certainty.


  2. Nagarajan sankaran

    July 27, 2013 at 8:46 am

    I don’t understand. Ur saying that “The victims body was exhumed and a DNA sample recovered from her body, when compared to that of a Albert’s relative, was found to be a MtDNA match.” if so, cud u pls tell me from which part of the body was Albert’s DNA recovered? death having occurred over 3 decades, i wud be interested in knowing how this evidence survived the decomp? how was it identified and recovered?


    • D.P. Lyle, MD

      July 27, 2013 at 10:05 am

      The semen sample was obtained from the victim by the coroner at the time of the murder and stored since then. DeSalvo’s body was exhumed to get his DNA for comparison.



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