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Suspect in ’88 Molotov cocktail triple fatal died from OD

From left to right: Durell, Genayle and Jermaine Mitchell in undated photos. (Provided Photos/Fort Wayne Police Department)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — The Fort Wayne Police Department has closed the case of the 1988 Molotov cocktail deaths of three boys because the suspect in the case died of a drug overdose more than a year ago.

Brian Martin, a cold case homicide detective for the Fort Wayne Police Department, said Wednesday that 53-year-old Jarvis Jefferson overdosed in December 2020.

Jefferson was 19 on May 21, 1988, when 3-year-old Durell Mitchell, 5-year-old Genayle Mitchell, and 11-year-old Jermaine Mitchell died after the Molotov cocktail was thrown into a home.

Several other members of the Mitchell family were injured. Martin says Jefferson confessed to the crime to a relative.