According to the filed criminal complaint against Hopkins, the body of Caltury was dressed in a light blue nightgown and found bound at the hands by rope and bed sheet.  Semen samples recovered from the body were gathered into evidence at the time of the murder in 1979 and stored until 2013. 

In interviews with the suspect just hours after the discovery of the murdered young woman’s body, Hopkins admitted to having a sexual relationship with Caltury but denied any knowledge of her murder.  At the time of the murder DNA testing technology did not exist so without further evidence to connect Hopkins to the violent attack, no charges were filed at the time.

Nowadays, things have well changed as forensic DNA testing has helped to solve countless murder cases that would have in the past, been unsolvable. In some cases, science has helped to free the wrongly convicted, such as in the Fredrick Peacock case who was convicted of rape back in the days when forensic testing did not exist. Later, a re-evaluation of the case with newly emerged methods showed that we has in fact innocent. Click here to read the story.

Caltury case reopened in 2013

For more than three decades the family of Catherine Caltury never received information to bring closure to the untimely death of the young woman.  Catherine’s mother passed away in 2004 without ever knowing for certain who was responsible for the death of her daughter.  Police investigators who arrested Hopkins this past week paid a visit to the surviving members of the Caltury family, Catherine’s father Pete and her brother Francesco Caltieri, and inform them of arrest.  “(This) is the beginning of closure,” Francesco Caltieri said. “We’ll see where it goes from here.”  Francesco also commented on the fact that his father Pete had been a driving force to reopen and resolve the open case involving his daughter.  Pete Caltury was the one who discovered the lifeless body of Catherine in her bedroom in 1979 and has fought hard to find the guilty party ever since.

Crime scene evidence the key

Police have stated simply that with the technology now available to assist investigators in tracing crime scene evidence, they were now able to move forward.  With the evidence containing biological material found at the scene still saved with the police, the matter of testing this evidence in a modern laboratory was all that remained to name a suspect.  While Hopkins can logically claim that his DNA has good reason to be at the crime scene due to his intimate relationship with the victim, forensic experts disagree.  The forensic police report states emphatically that regardless of the relationship with the victim, the locations where the DNA evidence was recovered imply that the material was left during the perpetration of the crime in question. Forensic analysis makes it possible to analyse the most degraded and smallest DNA samples. Click here to view a list of samples often found on crime scenes.

The case is scheduled to move forward against the former city councilman from Bridgewater.  Police are confident that this time around with the new forensic testing on hand that Hopkins will be convicted in the decades old murder.