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Suspect arrested in 1985 slaying of Long Beach model

March 9, 2011 |  7:58 pm

Joanne Marie Jones A suspect has been arrested in connection with the brutal stabbing of an aspiring Long Beach model in a case that was cold for more than two decades, authorities said Wednesday evening.

Stafford Joel Spicer, 59, was apprehended by cold-case homicide investigators with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department in Las Vegas, where he was living. He was being held there pending extradition to California,  authorities said.

Authorities said Spicer was served with an arrest warrant at his home in connection with the killing of Joanne Marie Jones, who was 23 years old when she disappeared April 29, 1985. Her body was found in June of that year in a remote area of Azusa Canyon east of Highway 39.

At the time, Spicer was apprehended by Long Beach police after he was spotted driving Jones' Chevrolet Camaro. He was later released for lack of evidence, the Sheriff's Department said.

The case was reopened in 2009 by the department's cold-case unit, which uncovered new DNA evidence, according to authorities.

The unit's motto is "Time is on our side," Capt. Mike Parker said. "Homicide cases," he said, "are never closed until they are solved."

Anyone with information is asked to call Det. Steve Davis at (323) 890-5500. Or tipsters can remain anonymous by calling LA Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS, texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637)


Brutal 1985 stabbing of model leads L.A. County detectives to Las Vegas man

-- Robert J. Lopez
Twitter: @LAJourno