One day after authorities linked suspected serial killer Derrick Todd Lee to the disappearance and apparent murder of Randi Mebruer, they say he's the prime suspect in another unsolved murder case.
Connie Warner, who lived in the same subdivision as 28-year-old Randi Mebruer, was reported missing on August 22, 1992. Her badly decomposed body was found two weeks later off Pittsburg Avenue near Capitol Lake.
The State Police Crime Lab is now testing sheets and clothing in Warner's case to see if they can get a DNA connection to Lee. Those items have never been tested for DNA.
Records show Warner is one of the first women murdered in a string of unsolved killings going back 10 years. When detectives first arrived at Warner's house they noticed blood on the floor in several rooms, including the bedroom. Warner's car was still at the house. Detectives say the washer and dryer had been moved indicating Warner had tried to hold on as she was being dragged out of her house.
Warner's father, Jack Brooks, was one of the first people to go inside the house once they discovered Connie was missing. He says, "After we got outside, we saw that Connie had been put in her car. She had apparently gotten sick inside her car."
Detectives believe that whatever happened to Warner inside her house made her sick and caused her to vommit in the back of the her own car.
Warner's father believes that the killer may have used Warner's own car to get rid of her body. He thinks the killer then drove the car back and parked it in the driveway. Jack Brooks had recently changed the oil in his daughter's car. He says the amount of miles that it took to drive where they knew Connie had been, plus driving to where her body was eventually found and back added up and seems to prove the theory that the killer used her car.
Zachary police detectives searched Warner's car extensively but never found any useful evidence. Connie's father believes the same person who killed his daughter is the same one who would later murder Randi Mebruer, although her body has never been found. Warner lived around the block from Mebruer in the Oak Shadows subdivision.
Police say they ran Derrick Lee, then in his early 20's out of Warner and Mebruer's neighborhood several times for looking into people's windows. "Connie, just before she died reported a peeping tom and that's why I think they are connected definitely," said Brooks.