Internet May Help Solve Murders - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

11/27/03

Internet May Help Solve Murders

A lack of information often handcuffs many investigations. To combat that problem, the Harrison County Sheriff's Department is using new technology to resurrect unsolved murders. Back in April, the department added a "Cold Case" link to its web site. Since then, investigators say they've had thousands of hits with people submitting information on the posted cases. Investigators hope that one of the tips will give them a much needed break.

Investigators say the most frustrating cases are the ones they can't solve, like those that are described on the Harrison County Sheriff's Department's web site.

"We have some unsolved cases here in the county that date back 30 years," said Ron Pullen with the Harrison County Sheriff's Department.

The oldest case is the 1973 unsolved murder of Rose Marie Levindosky. The teenager was stabbed to death, and her body was thrown into the Tchoutacabouffa River north of D'Iberville.

Pullen said, "The investigative leads just stopped or stopped coming in and they have not had arrests made in these cases so these are the ones we're hoping to get information on."

Since creating the Cold Case link last April, Pullen said more than 45-hundred people have logged onto the site.

The shooting death of Phillip Lyons has generated the most hits. Police found Lyons's car on the beach in Gulfport in August of 2002. Lyons's body was stuffed in the trunk.

Pullen said, "It's definitely helped us move this case along. This case is leaps and bounds from where it was because we've had it on the internet and it's helped us, helped us a lot."

With the facts of each case literally at people's fingertips, Pullen said they hope they can finally close the books on cases they say have remained open far too long.

The sheriff's deparment has recently added two more unsolved murders to the cold case link. The deputies need help in solving a drive-by shooting that occurred in D'Iberville back in April. Two Vietnamese teenagers were shot to death in what investigators think may be gang-related.

Marcia Hill

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