Man accused of 1984 murder of Wendy Jerome pleads not guilty |

Man accused of 1984 murder of Wendy Jerome pleads not guilty

Updated: October 02, 2020 12:25 PM
Created: October 02, 2020 05:57 AM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The Florida man arrested for the murder of a 14-year-old girl from Rochester back in 1984 pleaded not guilty in Monroe County Court Friday morning.

Authorities arrested Timothy Williams last month, nearly 36 years after the crime, while he was living in Florida.

Investigators say he killed Wendy Jerome on Thanksgiving Day in 1984. News10NBC’s Nikki Rudd has been following the case in the exclusive Inside the Evidence series.

Ultimately, Rochester Police say familial DNA testing is what led them to suspect Williams. It all started with DNA samples RPD sent to the State Police Crime Lab.

"So, by the familial search, we then use an algorithm to compare the people in the data bank to this crime scene sample and look for relatives," New York State Police Crime Lab Director Ray Wickenheiser said.

Jerome’s case is the first in the state where an arrest was made from using this type of testing.

Assistant District Attorney Julie Hahn says they've put in countless hours to bring justice to the Jerome family.

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