Stalking Justice: The Dramatic True Story of the Detective Who First Used DNA Testing To...
Paul Mones. Pocket Books, $23 (314pp) ISBN 978-0-671-70348-6
Joe Horgas, a detective with the Arlington, Va., police force, fought a lonely battle with his own department, with the Richmond Police Department and with state officials to prove a suspect guilty of several rapes and killings going back to the mid-1980s. Eventually DNA proved Timothy Spencer guilty in four of the cases, and he was executed in 1994. Spencer, who was born in 1962, was a convicted burglar who lived in a halfway house in Richmond and worked in a furniture factory. Mones (When a Child Kills) stresses that, because the killer left no forensic evidence except his semen, this was the first case in Virginia in which a defendant was convicted on the basis of DNA. A salutary corollary to Spencer's conviction was the freeing of the man who had confessed to one of the crimes as a result of police pressure. Photos not seen by PW. Author tour. (July)
Reviewed on: 07/03/1995