61-year-old man sentenced for 1998 murder of woman

Crime Watch 8
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INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A 61-year-old Indianapolis man has been sentenced to more than 100 years in connection to a 1998 murder and rape. 

On Nov. 5, 1998, police detectives found the partially burned body of Kenya Edwards, 26, inside a home that had been on fire in the 3800 block of North Tacoma Avenue. That’s just east of North Keystone Avenue. 

Edwards’ wrists and legs had been bound with electrical cords. Police found evidence of a struggle in the home and a broken window in the rear of the residence. An autopsy determined Edwards’ cause of death was from thermal burns and smoke inhalation. 

Detectives working the case were unable to link anyone to the crime until DNA evidence was retested in 2009. In February 2015, detectives were notified of a match to Johnny Jones, who was already behind bars in the Indiana Department of Correction for an unrelated 2014 conviction of unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. 

RELATED: Retested DNA helps solve 1998 Indianapolis cold case

Earlier this month, Jones was found guilty on both charges. He was sentenced Friday to 115 years in the Indiana Department of Correction, according to the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office.  

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry on Friday said, “As I stated in prior cold case convictions, it is undoubtedly difficult for families to have passage of any time, let alone years, without knowing how a loved one was lost to violence. We are pleased that after more than twenty years of uncertainty regarding the circumstances of her death, the family of Kenya Edwards will now have the finality of this conviction and what is effectively a life sentence for this murder.”

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