Gary Billy Bivens pleaded no contest to second-degree murder and aggravated assault in the January 1981 death of Martha Winters during a burglary at her home in Phoenix.
PHOENIX (AP/CBS5) -
An Arizona man convicted in the beating death of a 93-year-old woman was sentenced to the maximum 55 years in prison in a case that went unsolved for nearly 30 years until investigators revisited DNA evidence from the crime scene.
Gary Billy Bivens pleaded no contest to second-degree murder and aggravated assault in the January 1981 death of Martha Winters and an attack on her sister-in-law during a burglary at the women's Phoenix home.
The 92-year-old sister-in-law, Jesse Winters, was beaten but survived the Jan. 31 attack.
An intruder entered their home and demanded money from Jesse Winters, who was hearing impaired and unable to understand him. He then wrote a note demanding money and threatening to kill her, but when she refused to cooperate he beat her until she was unconscious, prosecutor said.
When she regained consciousness, Jesse Winters found her sister-in-law severely beaten and lying on the living room floor. Their home had been ransacked and a gun was later found missing from the residence.
Martha Winters died from her injuries a few days later. Police identified several possible suspects but were unable to link any of them to the crime. With no additional leads, the investigation went cold.
Authorities say the case was solved after investigators re-examined it and matched DNA found on a comb outside the Winters' home with DNA from Bivens.
Bivens wasn't a suspect until 2010 but had submitted a DNA sample to a national database after he was arrested on armed robbery charges.
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation) contributed to this report.
Sunday, March 9 2014 3:04 PM EDT2014-03-09 19:04:53 GMT
(Source: CBS 5 News)
An administrative law judge with the NTSB ruled Thursday that the FAA has no decision making authority over the operation of unmanned aerial systems (UAS, also known as UAVs or drones) temporarily clearingMore >
An administrative law judge with the NTSB ruled Thursday that the FAA has no decision making authority over the operation of unmanned aerial systems. More >
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:36 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:36:20 GMT
Car over the edge of I-17 in Phoenix
Arizona Department of Public Safety officers investigated a bizarre crash Sunday on Interstate 17. A driver, whose name was not released, was exiting the freeway near Camelback Road when the SUV blewMore >
Arizona Department of Public Safety officers investigated a bizarre crash Sunday on Interstate 17.More >
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:59 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:59:38 GMT
Buckeye shooting leaves one dead
Buckeye police are looking for a suspect who shot a tow truck driver early Sunday afternoon and then fled. Officer Tamela Skaggs said the suspect was last seen heading west on MC85. She said the truckMore >
Witnesses said they heard somewhere between four to five gunshots and found a man lying on the side of the road in front of Don Lalo Auto Repair.More >
Monday, March 10 2014 6:34 PM EDT2014-03-10 22:34:40 GMT
Family, friends and the community will gather Monday to honor the Phoenix police detective who died in a gun battle with a fugitive. The Phoenix Police Department announced Wednesday that funeral servicesMore >
"Remember the character and courage that John left as a legacy to policing, a legacy to the Phoenix Police Department, a commitment to his fellow officer and man," Phoenix Police Chief Daniel Garcia said.More >
Sunday, March 9 2014 10:04 AM EDT2014-03-09 14:04:05 GMT
Reported kidnapping in Phoenix
A woman was kidnapped at gunpoint Saturday evening, Phoenix police said. It happened near 67th Avenue and Coolidge. Officers said she was walking northbound on 67th Avenue when a car came up behind her. PoliceMore >
Police released a grainy video of what they said was a kidnapping on 67th Avenue near Coolidge. The video shows a woman being thrown into a white car Saturday afternoon. More >
A 45-year-old man is dead after a cab struck him in Scottsdale early Sunday morning, police said. The man had left a nearby restaurant before 1:30 a.m. and walked across Scottsdale Road, said ScottsdaleMore >
The man had left a nearby restaurant before 1:30 a.m. and walked across Scottsdale Road, said Scottsdale police Officer David Pubins.More >
Friday, February 28 2014 3:27 AM EST2014-02-28 08:27:54 GMT
On a rainy Monday afternoon, the buzz of air-powered tools rattled through the garage at CSC Lifts, Liners, and Accessories. The experienced hands of Darrell Carmena applied just the right pressure toMore >
A truck, the man of men, holds so many memories for a family. This fitting tribute is a chance to live on through the work, the sweat and the mud.More >