After 30 Years Of Searching, Did DNA Solve This Montana Murder?
After 30 years without any answers, a Montana cold case has finally been solved.
It all started in 1992 in an area commonly known as "Peace Tree Camp" or "Orange Avenue Ranch" located just off of Interstate 90 in Missoula County. There, a body was found partially buried. It was later determined that the body was that of a man named William Adams, a.k.a. "Cadillac Man".
After some investigation, it was discovered that Adams had been murdered by massive force to his head, along with a stab wound to his chest. In fact, when he was found, part of the knife was actually broken off in his chest.
Another factor that played into the murder was the way Adams was clothed. His shirt was apparently pulled over his head and other articles of clothing also contained blood and blood splatter.
Now, if you recall, DNA testing in the early 90s was not nearly as precise as it is today, especially when you throw forensic genetic genealogy into the mix. Because of sites such as Ancestry and 23 and Me, authorities are now able to retrace previously unfound DNA and find their way back to the source of the crime.
Like so many other cases, DNA testing is what brought this cold case to a close. DNA led investigators to believe that the culprit in this 1992 killing was Leonard Owen, also known as "8 Ball".
Unfortunately, Owen is no longer alive, so retrieving more information as to why this killing happened will most likely be impossible. It is known that Owen and Adams frequently traveled by train and did not have physical addresses.
Considering both Owen's long history of criminal behavior that included violent crimes, and the DNA found on the victim, it is safe to say that Owen is the only person suspected of committing this outlandish murder.
cc: NBC Montana, Helenair