BAY VILLAGE, Ohio (WJW) – The Fox 8 I-TEAM has uncovered new steps investigators are taking to solve the murder of a 10-year-old girl from Bay Village who was killed nearly 32 years ago. Her father told us he has not given up hope and believes the case will be solved.
“I have always had that in my heart, that it is going to be solved,” said Mark Mihaljevic, Amy Mihaljevic’s father.
Amy Mihaljevic’s kidnapping and murder shocked the entire community and for more than three decades detectives have searched for her killer.
“I think this modern technology we have right now, things are going to happen,” Mihaljevic said.
He noted that detectives are able to get a lot more information from DNA evidence and he is hoping that will lead them to the killer.
Law enforcement officials tell the I-TEAM they have taken DNA samples from people as recently as a couple of months ago.
Bay Village Detective Jay Elish says a lot of the DNA testing they are doing now is to help eliminate possible suspects and to make sure any of the DNA they do have is not what is referred to as contamination DNA, such as a hair, from a law enforcement agent that was dropped at the scene.
“So we are always ruling people out that were previous suspects to see if their DNA matches the DNA that we have,” Elish told the I-TEAM.
He added that they do have some untested DNA in Amy’s case and they are exploring testing it with the latest DNA advancements.
The 10-year-old went missing on October 27, 1989, after she met an unknown man after school in a shopping plaza in Bay Village. She had told others she was meeting a man, who she thought was going to help her pick out a gift for her mother. When she didn’t return home that evening, she was reported as missing. Police began a massive search to find her but she was never seen alive again.
“104 days later we found her body her in Ashland County,” said retired Ashland Sheriff Deputy Carl Richert.
In February of 1990, Amy’s body was discovered by a jogger in a field in Ashland County, which is about 50 miles south of Bay Village. Investigators believe Amy’s killer may have been familiar with the area since it is in a very remote location.
Richert said he never thought the case would go unsolved for so long
“We have a girl, a 10-year-old girl, that we can’t find who did this to her,” Richert said. “I pray to God that one of these days we get the right evidence to close this case for the family.”
Elish said detectives are continuing to do everything they can to find the killer.
“It’s important to us, for Amy, to solve this case,” Elish said.
Anyone with information on the murder of Amy Mihaljevic should contact the Cleveland Division of the FBI at 216-622-6842 or the Bay Village Police Department at 440-871-1234.