The San Francisco Police Department, in conjunction with the District Attorney’s Office, is conducting a press conference today, Tuesday, August 12, in the Police Commission Hearing Room, Room 551 in the Hall of Justice at 1:45 P.M. The conference will announce the indictment of a suspect in an 18-year-old homicide case due to new DNA evidence analysis.
As a young SFPD patrol officer, Thomas Buckley had responded to the homicide of Barbara Ellis Martz, a 28-year-old photographer on December 4, 1985. Ms. Martz was stabbed to death after she was raped. Although biological evidence had been collected at the time, the technology for DNA analysis that existed at the time was not sophisticated enough to be useful in identifying the suspect.
In January 2002, Inspector James Spillane of the SFPD Homicide Section submitted DNA evidence to the Department’s Crime Lab. On August 30, 2002, Dr. Cydne Holt of the SFPD’s Forensic Division confirmed the hit on John Davis, a suspect currently at the California State Prison in Lancaster, California. Davis is in custody for a robbery charge, with a discharge scheduled in 2008. Davis lived near the location where Ms. Martz resided. He was 18 years old at the time.
The San Francisco Grand Jury indicted John Davis this morning, August 12.
For more information, please contact:
Inspector James Spillane
Sergeant Neville Gittens
Public Affairs Office