AVENTURA (CBSMiami) – Police in Aventura have a new possible lead in the 16-year-old murder of Irving “Al” Sicherer.
Investigators have released a new image of a person of interest using DNA evidence. Using DNA Phenotyping, a revolutionary new forensic analysis, investigators can predict someone’s physical appearance from DNA. It can be used to generate leads in cases where there are no suspects or database hits, or to help identify unknown remains.
Aventura police are hoping the release of the new image will help generate new leads in the murder, which took place on July 25, 2001.
“There’s mounds of evidence, mounds of information that we have to review and, you know, a lot of the witnesses or subjects aren’t even around anymore so we’ve got to go from square one trying to retrace the evidence,” said Aventura Police Department Det. Tom Mundy.
Previously-released surveillance video shows Al and younger man at an Aventura Publix the night of his death. Police believe Sicherer may have picked him up at the beach or a gay bar.
“At one point during our investigation, we discovered video surveillance of Mr. Sicherer at a local Publix with a young man who is a person of interest in this homicide,” said Aventura Police Department Major Michael Bentolila.
Later the two were seen on surveillance video at Sicherer’s condo building. The guy vanished and Sicherer was later found viciously beaten and stabbed in his apartment.
The killer did leave behind some vital clues, fingerprints and DNA.
Four years ago, Aventura police thought they had a partial DNA match from a Michigan prison inmate. That turned into a dead end.
In 2013, police released a new age progression sketch hoping that would lead to a suspect but no luck.
The man in the surveillance video walked hunched over a bit, with a tattoo or birthmark near his right elbow.
“We will not rest whether it takes 20 years, 30 years or 40 years, whatever it takes until we find whoever’s responsible in order for us to bring closure to the family,” said Bentolila.
If you have information that can help call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS.