Charlottetown police reopen 1980s murder case

Police in Charlottetown are reopening the file in the strangulation and stabbing death of Byron Carr, who was found in his home in Charlottetown in November 1988.

Police in Charlottetown are reopening the file in thedeath of Byron Carr, a former high school teacher who wasfound in his home in Charlottetown in November 1988.

Richard Collins said police are looking to re-interview a number of people. ((CBC))

The case is the only unsolved murder on P.E.I. in recent times, andpolice in Charlottetown are reopening a cold case.

"We are launching a full review of the Byron Howard Carr file," Deputy Chief Richard Collins told CBC News on Thursday.

Carr, 36, was strangled to death and stabbed in the bedroom of his home on a quiet street in Charlottetown. Written on the wall was the message, "I will kill again."

His killer was never found.

There was no sign of a break-in to his house, so police suspect Carr knew his attacker, even if it was a casual relationship. Carr was gay, and police say at that time, that community was close and tight-lipped.

Police believe Byron Carr knew his killer, even if only casually. ((CBC))

Collins said there was a lot of rumour and speculation about the case, and many people may have been apprehensive about their friendship with Carr. Police hope there may be some new information that could come out to point them to the killer now.

Collins said police have a number of people they want to re-interview.

"I can't indicate how many people we are looking at," he said.

"All I can say is the people that we are interested in, to our knowledge at this point in time, are currently alive and well, and we will seek them out, whether they are on Prince Edward Island or off Prince Edward Island."

Police hope new technologies applied to evidence gathered at the crime scene in 1988 will help solve the case. ((CBC))

Police say they have no new evidence. While re-interviews will be part of the investigation, new DNA technologies are the real hope for a breakthrough in the case. DNA technology for crime investigations was in its infancy in 1988.

"We will be continuing to, aggressively, at this point in time, to deal with identified persons of interest and either link or eliminate them to this file," said Collins.

Suspects will be asked to provide DNA samples voluntarily. If they don't, police will seek a warrant.

Police say they've spoken to Carr's family, who welcome the review, and hope it will lead to some more information onhis death.

It will take months to track down all the people they want to talk to, police say, and there are no guarantees reopening the file will bring them any closer to closing the case.