DNA links man to 1982 murder in Phoenix

Posted at 8:50 AM, Jun 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-01 19:44:49-04

Thirty-three years after Sally Bryant's murder, Phoenix Police have finally DNA-linked and arrested the man suspected of the crime.

According to police documents, Larry Robinson, entered the 83-year-old's home near 15th Avenue and Buckeye Road during the afternoon of Sept. 5, 1982. Bryant's body was later found by her son -- she had died from multiple stab wounds to her face and chest during an apparent robbery.

Police found her home blood-stained and ransacked, and items from inside had been stolen. A bloody shirt was found inside and witnesses reported seeing a shirtless African-American man in the neighborhood, but no suspect was ever located by police. 

Cold case detectives revisited the case in 2012 and were able to collect more forensic evidence from items found at the scene. In 2016, a DNA match was finally made, linking Robinson to the crime.

Police located and interviewed Robinson, now 56 years old, who said he lived nearby and had committed burglaries, but had no knowledge of that particular 1982 murder.

Robinson was arrested on Tuesday, May 31 in Phoenix and he continued to tell police he didn't know why his fingerprints and DNA were found inside the victim's home.

He was booked into jail on one count of first-degree murder.