DNA From Coffee Cup Solves 1975 Cold Case Murder Of 19-Year-Old Lindy Sue Biechler

In July 2022, one of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania’s oldest cold cases was solved when David Sinopoli, 68, was arrested for the brutal murder of Lindy Sue Biechler.

Lindy Sue Biechler, pictured here smiling, was only 19 years old when she was found stabbed to death in her apartment home in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, on Dec. 5, 1975.

In July 2022, one of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania’s oldest cold cases was solved when David Sinopoli, 68, was charged in the stabbing murder of Lindy Sue Biechler.

Photo by: Lancaster County Police Department

Lancaster County Police Department

Lindy Sue Biechler was only 19 years old when she was found stabbed to death in her apartment home in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, on Dec. 5, 1975. She had been sexually assaulted before being stabbed 19 times in her chest, back, and neck. The young girl also had defensive wounds, showing she fought hard for her life. According to Lancaster Online, the knife was still in her neck when she was found.

The Washington Post reported that police worked diligently on the case. They interviewed as many as 300 people, consulted crime experts, and launched a task force. However, the crime went unsolved for nearly five decades.

On July 18, 2022, Lancaster County District Attorney Heather Adams announced that a suspect had finally been arrested for Biechler’s brutal murder. David Vincent Sinopoli, 68, of East Hempfield Township, Pennsylvania, was charged with criminal homicide.

“We are here today due to advances in DNA technology,” said Adams. “The cold case one was the oldest unsolved ones in the county, and after all those years, a discarded coffee cup helped lead to the arrest.”

Using DNA evidence collected from the crime scene, genetic genealogist CeCe Moore of Parabon NanoLabs determined that Biechler’s murderer likely had ancestors from Gasperina, a small town in Italy. Moore then cross-referenced that data with family trees from Lancaster County, and this led her to Sinopoli who was still living in the same county.

Once Sinopoli was on the investigators’ radar, authorities started surveilling him for months. When they spotted Sinopoli tossing out a coffee cup at the Philadelphia International Airport, they retrieved it for DNA testing. His DNA was then tested, and it matched the DNA that was found in the victim’s underwear.

Sinopoli had lived in the same four-unit building as Biechler, reported WGAL. No other known connection between Biechler and the alleged killer has been reported. Sinopoli was arrested at 7 a.m. on July 17, 2022, at his Pennsylvania home. He is now in custody and is being held without bail at Lancaster County Prison.

Adams said, "Lindy Sue Biechler was 19 when her life was brutally taken away from her 46 years ago in the sanctity of her own home. The arrest of David Sinopoli marks the beginning of the court process, and we hope that it brings some sense of relief to the victim’s loved ones and to the community, who for the past 47 years have had no answers."

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