Robert E. Quinn, currently serving a sentence for an unrelated child molesting conviction at New Castle Correctional Facility, was charged with felony child molesting, rape and confinement in 2013 after the case was reopened and DNA samples preserved from the original investigation submitted for testing were reportedly matched to him.
Clothing items from the victim were sent to the Indiana State Police laboratory in 1988, but due to forensic science limitations did not provide any conclusive evidence at the time. Samples were maintained in a vault and able to be analyzed with current DNA technology.
The victim had contacted the sheriff’s department in 2012 to inquire about her case, which prompted a former detective to track down witnesses and medical records. A lab confirmed that the original evidence samples were still in good condition and secure, submitting the DNA profile of the previously unidentified male suspect to the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) database.
Quinn pleaded guilty on the charge of rape, a Class A felony, prior to the trial. He provided testimony in vivid detail, with his victim witnessing his confession. Defense attorneys challenged the child molesting and confinement charges however, alleging a violation of the statutory period.
Judge George Biddlecome entered a judgement of conviction regarding the rape charge and set the remaining counts for an evidentiary hearing in Elkhart Superior Court 3. Prosecuting attorneys intend to proceed with additional evidence in the molesting and confinement charges.
If convicted, Quinn will face a sentence ranging from 20 to 53 years.
Source: Goshen News