Authorities make arrest in brutal 1999 cold-case homicide

A woman now living in Florida has been arrested in connection with a brutal 1999 homicide.

Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling today identified Peggy Lynn Johnson, who was 23 at the time, as the victim found dead in Racine County on July 21, 1999.

Linda LaRoche, a registered nurse in McHenry, Illinois, at the time, was arrested Tuesday in Cape Coral, Florida, by Racine County Sheriff’s Office detectives.

Over the years, Johnson’s DNA was submitted for genealogical DNA testing and her body was exhumed for chemical isotope testing conducted by the Smithsonian Institution, Schmaling said at a Friday morning news conference.

It was only recently that investigators developed information that led to Johnson’s identification.

Since then, investigators have learned that Johnson, 18 at the time and cognitively impaired, was on her own after her mother died.

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