• Rod Kackley

Science Wins! California Murders Solved Thanks to New DNA Technology

Janet Ann Taylor, 21, decided to hitchhike home from the Stanford University campus on March 24, 1974. The next day, a delivery driver found the young woman, the daughter of former Stanford athletic director and football coach Chuck Taylor, dead.

Janet had been strangled to death and left in a ditch on Sand Hill Road west of I-280.

More than forty years later, San Mateo County, California prosecutors are charging John Arthur Getreu with her murder.

The seventy-four-year-old man is already charged with killing another young woman in California. Getreu is accused of killing another twenty-one-year-old, Leslie Perlov. She was found strangled to death in the hills near Stanford 13 months before Janet was discovered dead.

Getreu’s been in a Santa Clara County, California jail cell since November 2018, awaiting trial for Leslie’s murder.

Santa Clara prosecutors say new DNA technology gave them the evidence to charge Getreu with killing Leslie.

“The break that Santa Clara County came up with from their crime lab was critical to us being able to solve this case,” said Assistant San Mateo County Sheriff Gregory Rathaus during a press conference.

Janet and Leslie were two of four young people associated with Stanford to be found murdered on or near the university’s campus between 1973 and 1974. All of the cases went unsolved for decades.

Another suspect was charged with one of those killings, in June, The fourth case remains unsolved.

“Law enforcement is not giving up on the victims,” Rathaus added. “And we have new DNA technology that is a great tool for us.”

She Cries Alone: A Shocking True Crime Story

Is she a cold-blooded killer who murdered her fiance for a $250,000 insurance payout? Or was she a victim of a flawed justice system? You'll be the judge as you read, She Cries Alone: A Shocking True Crime Story.

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