Australian man's historical past of grotesque household homicide revealed by DNA take a look at practically 60 years after his escape from jail

  • In 1958, William Leslie Arnold killed his dad and mom and buried them in his again yard.
  • After escaping from jail in 1967, he fled to Australia and have become a household man.
  • His grotesque previous was found this 12 months, after DNA testing led investigators to his son.

It took 55 years and an at-home DNA take a look at, however US Marshals have lastly closed a chilly case after a long time of monitoring a assassin who killed his dad and mom and escaped from jail.

In 1958, then-16-year-old William Leslie Arnold fought together with his dad and mom over taking their automobile to the drive-in earlier than fatally capturing them each and burying them within the yard of the household’s dwelling. After serving a decade of his life sentence, he and one other inmate escaped from the Nebraska State Penitentiary. 

The opposite inmate was caught. Arnold fled, finally ending up in Australia, the place he married and began his circle of relatives, claiming that he was an orphan, CNN reported.

Arnold’s darkish previous would have by no means been found have been it not for that lie, as the person’s son later went on the lookout for extra details about his father’s unknown previous – and ended up with greater than he bargained for.

In 2020, in cooperation with US Marshal investigators nonetheless trying to find the fugitive, Arnold’s brother James, who was not dwelling on the time of the murders, submitted a DNA pattern utilizing an at-home take a look at package to a significant database corresponding to AncestryDNA or 23AndMe, although investigators haven’t specified precisely which service was used.

The Guardian reported that AncestryDNA, 23AndMe, and My Heritage, the most important family tree websites, usually forestall legislation enforcement from placing crime scene DNA into their methods however, with a member of the family’s permission, corresponding to Arnold’s brother, they will submit samples and run searches. 

James Arnold’s DNA pattern sat unmatched for 2 years when one other at-home take a look at package was submitted, 1000’s of miles away, and the thriller was lastly solved — an in depth familial match appeared, and had reached out desirous to know extra about their relative. 

“I am looking for out extra details about my father. He was an orphan from Chicago,” CNN reported Arnold’s son, who stays nameless, stated in an e-mail to his uncle when the match was found in 2022. 

Matt Westover, Deputy US Marshal for the District of Nebraska, didn’t instantly reply to Insider’s request for remark.

Arnold’s son helped investigators piece collectively the person’s life after he escaped from jail. After escaping in Nebraska, Arnold assumed the title John Damon, and jumped from Cincinnati, Miami, and Los Angeles, earlier than shifting to New Zealand within the Nineteen Nineties, then Australia years after. He met his spouse, raised his 4 kids, and died in 2010 at age 69 with a legacy of a businessman and doting father, per CNN. 

“There is not any warning label on the DNA take a look at package telling you that you just may not like what you discover,” the son stated, per CNN. “However I do not remorse doing it, and I am glad I now know the reality about my dad. Though it is stunning to know that his life started with a horrible crime, his legacy is a lot greater than that.”


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