BIRTH: March 26, 1978
DEATH: March 30, 1995
Deanna, 17, was found strangled to death behind a senior apartment complex.
Deanna followed her usual Wednesday routine of going out with friends and visiting her boyfriend. Her curfew was 10 pm; when she was not home by midnight, her mother tried unsuccessfully to reach her on her pager.
Her boyfriend, considered the last person to see Deanna alive, admits walking her home that night, but says he left her halfway, as he often had during their year-long courtship.
Deanna’s body was found less than a block from her home. She was found by two children she babysat for, taking a shortcut on their way to school. Her body was lying on its back, and mostly undressed.
Police identified three men as persons of interest in the crime: Deanna’s teenage boyfriend; a Somerville firefighter more than twice Deanna’s age, said to have been fixated on her; and a third adult man, later imprisoned at Massachusetts Correctional Institution – Cedar Junction but no charges were pressed. In 2005, Middlesex district attorney announced new forensic evidence had been found with procedures unavailable in 1995, raising hope of progress in the case, but again no charges were pressed.
In 2009, current Middlesex district attorney stated that the murder would be solved, but law enforcement needed witnesses who had remained silent to come forward. Deanna’s family erects a billboard each year since her death, to offer a reward for information about the killer. At the bottom of the billboard, a quote reads: “You know what you did to me. How much longer must I wait! Please help make my time in heaven restful.” The reward has grown from $10,000 in 1995to $20,000 by 2005.
Deanna’s murder remains unsolved.