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Man arrested 21 years after Georgia woman's killing

A man has been arrested 21 years after a Georgia woman was found dead in her bedroom. He has been charged with a number of crimes, including murder. Police said a relative's DNA led them to the suspect.

On May 25, 1997, the woman's father tried to wake her for church. Instead, as he entered her bedroom, he found her dead, shot in the back several times, according to police in Fulton County.

She was a church youth counselor and a marketing professional. The man who eventually would be charged lived less than one mile away.

Her father said that when he opened the bedroom door, he saw his daughter in "her blood on the floor." Police said the woman clearly had fought back, and a lot of the suspect's blood was discovered in the bedroom. They didn't find any signs of robbery, sexual assault or forced entry, though.

Police saved the blood evidence. Because of genetic genealogy testing, they were able to find a family match in the DNA. As police worked the case, they discovered the suspect was the only relative who lived in the area of the woman's home at the time she was killed.

With a search warrant, police collected the man's DNA and found a match. In addition to murder, he was charged with having a firearm during the commission of a felony and assault with a deadly weapon.

"We have some relief," the woman's family said in a statement. "One chapter has closed, but there are new ones opening with trials, sentencing and all that we will be learning about the next phase of the process."

Investigators have more tools at their disposal than ever, thanks to improvement in forensic testing and DNA. Anyone who is asked to submit to a DNA test or answer questions about a crime needs the assistance of a criminal defense attorney.

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