How an NYPD Lieutenant's Intuition Helped Catch the Queens Jogger Murder Suspect

How an NYPD Lieutenant's Intuition Helped Catch the Queens Jogger Murder Suspect

A suspect is in custody in the murder of Karina Vetrano, a 30-year-old woman who went out running in the Howard Beach neighborhood of Queens, New York, and never returned, police announced Sunday.

Forensic evidence found during a follow-up investigation also implicated Lewis, NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said. He is charged with second-degree murder.

Karina Vetrano was strangled while jogging in Howard Beach on August 2. Police sources say his DNA matches the DNA profile retrieved from Vetrano's body.

Her beloved father Philip, a retired firefighter, regularly uploaded photos with his daughter on Instagram including from a U2 concert in Los Angeles.

Lewis faces a possible prison sentence of 25 years to life if convicted.

Lewis' half-sister, Theresa Forbes, told ABC station WABC-TV in NY that her brother is "not a killer" and "not a violent person", adding that she thinks police are framing him.

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The discovery led authorities to Lewis' home, where they placed him under arrest.

Jackie Hartstein, who befriend Vetrano after meeting her in Miami six years ago, said: "She was always there, so handsome and so talented, she inspired you".

"He's a demon! He can burn in hell", she reportedly shouted.

"Karina helped us identify this person", Boyce said.

Vetrano went for a run in Spring Creek Park on August 2. Police have not yet determined a motive, but they do not believe he was stalking or knew Vetrano.

Cops said she had put up a "vicious fight" which left the killer's DNA under her fingernails.

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"She had the DNA under her nails, she had touch DNA on her back, and there was more DNA on the cellphone", which matching the sample Lewis provided. "As the new technologies come on board, we are applying it to these cases and we are gaining more and more information from evidence we may not have been able to solve in years past", Kupferschmid said. Lewis said he wandered into Spring Creek Park in Queens, and when he saw Vetrano, he just "lost it", and hit and choked her, according to the official. "And that's how we made the link". Lewis, who had no criminal background, voluntarily gave DNA to the police.

A video released in September shows Vetrano jogging near her Howard Beach home the day she disappeared.

"I think they faked it", the sister said. "We know who he is", Cathy Vetrano said.

It is claimed Lewis went to a medical centre after Ms Vetrano's death because of a hand injury, which he said resulted from being mugged.

After the hearing, Lewis's father Richard told CBS that he does not believe his son is in anyway responsible.

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