From: Associated Press
Published September 19, 2007 11:14 AM

Arrest Made in 1993 Slaying in Buffalo

Detectives have charged a man with a Buffalo strangling 14 years ago and say he is "a person of interest" in two other slayings in western New York.

Dennis Donohue, 55, was arraigned and jailed Tuesday on a second-degree murder charge for the 1993 death of Joan Giambra, according to police.

Giambra's body was found in her South Buffalo home after colleagues at a church pantry where she worked went to check on her because she failed to show up for her shift.

The Buffalo Police Cold Case Squad reopened the case last year, when improved DNA technology turned up new evidence from the crime scene. The DNA evidence links Donohue to the Giambra case, police told The Buffalo News.

The newspaper reported Wednesday that police are looking at Donohue's possible involvement in another 1993 killing — the strangulation of 13-year-old Crystallynn Girard, the daughter of his former girlfriend. Lynn DeJac, the girl's mother, was convicted of that killing, despite her protests of innocence, the newspaper reported.

Police are also reviewing the cold case of Carol Reed, who was in a relationship with Donohue and was found strangled in her apartment in 1975.

Giambra and Reed were each killed on a Sept. 9, which is Donohue's birthday, according to television reports.

Police weren't saying Tuesday whether they have DNA evidence linking Donohue to the other two killings.

Erie County District Attorney Frank J. Clark cautioned against jumping to conclusions that an innocent person has been imprisoned in the Girard case.

"If the police feel they have enough evidence to link him to those other crimes, then we'll prosecute at that time," Clark said. "Right now, all we have is speculation."

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