FBI Names ‘Person of Interest’ in 1989 Missing Boy Case

30 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

A Look At Danny Heinrich’s Criminal Past.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minnesota man charged with child pornography after a search of his home found pictures of naked boys is also a “person of interest” in the disappearance of Jacob Wetterling, whose 1989 abduction led his parents to launch a national center to prevent child exploitation. Brought to a crashing halt was the confidence — perhaps overconfidence — that life in our pastoral state afforded protection against crimes thought to happen elsewhere. The 28-year-old mother of three kids said she never expected anything amiss with Heinrich in the two years since her family moved in until Heinrich told her husband about the July search warrant — and the child pornography that police found. In January 1989, in the nearby town of Cold Spring, a man in a car approached a 12-year-old boy named Jared, kidnapped him and sexually assaulted him.

An application for a search warrant in that case says that authorities wanted to search for items including human remains, a red T-shirt with the name Wetterling on the back and a red hockey team jacket with the name Jacob stitched on the front. Thornton told a news conference that Heinrich was originally looked at after Wetterling’s abduction and again when investigators reviewed the cold case.

The home is in a residential neighborhood and near a school. • At Thursday’s news conference, Heinrich was called a “person of interest” by U.S. That’s where investigators pulled him from the factory floor over the summer for questioning. “Everyone’s got to talking, and everyone’s heard about it,” she said. “That he’s a suspect back in 1989, they booked him, took his mug, hair samples…all that stuff.” Investigators also found VHS tapes, which appear to have been shot by Heinrich, showing boys doing various activities, such as delivering newspapers and playing on the playground. Patty and Jerry Wetterling issued a statement asking for help in the case of their missing son Jacob as authorities investigated a man with possible ties to the boy’s abduction in 1989. “The search for Jacob is an ongoing investigation and we will watch and learn like everyone else. Heinrich has “denied any involvement” in Wetterling’s disappearance, according to Luger. • Heinrich’s home was searched on July 28, 2015, by Stearns County authorities seeking evidence in the Wetterling case, but they did not find any.

However, an FBI special agent, Shane Ball, cautioned in the document that “an exact match” of such impressions would have to be based on unique characteristics of the tire shoe, such as a scuff or wear mark. “No such unique markings were present,” Ball wrote. • According to the criminal complaint, Heinrich was a member of the Minnesota Army National Guard out of Willmar. A tire mark and a shoe print found near the abduction site were found at the time to be consistent with Heinrich’s property, though both lacked a “unique feature” to definitively link him to the scene.

A more recent cold-case review of Jacob’s disappearance yielded a troubling new finding that potentially links Heinrich to the type of crime that may have befallen Jacob. They found the items were “consistent” with tracks left in a gravel driveway near the site of Wetterling’s abduction, but couldn’t be ruled an exact match.

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