San Bernardino County

Las Vegas Man Arrested in 40-Year-Old Cold Case of Slain Woman in San Bernardino County

Alex Vasquez

A cold case from 1980 revolving around the slaying of an 18-year-old woman was finally solved with the help of DNA technology, nabbing a suspect in Las Vegas, Fontana police said.

In 1980, officers discovered the body of Michelle "Missy" Jones in the city of Fontana near Live Oak and Santa Ana avenues.

Her body was found with dirt covering her head, and her dress and pantyhose removed.

Though forensic evidence was collected, technology at the time was unable to process it.

For the next 40 years, the case would go cold.

It wasn't until 2020 that the evidence collected was sent to the Riverside/San Bernardino CAL-DNA Laboratory. Unfortunately, no matches came up in the Combined DNA Index System.

Discussions with the family of the victim led to an investigation into Leonard Nash. Investigators found him in Las Vegas, and after collecting his discarded DNA, the lab compared the items to Jones' autopsy. They found a match.

He was taken into custody in Las Vegas on Sept. 8, and was awaiting extradition to San Bernardino County.

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