70-year-old US Woman Arrested Over Decades-old Cold Case Killing


A 70-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of killing a man in Crestline, California, USA after authorities reopened a decades-old cold case, San Bernardino County Sheriff's officials reported.

Diane Elizabeth Cook remained in custody Thursday (Friday NZ time) at West Valley Detention Centre in Rancho Cucamonga, with bail set at $1 million, sheriff's booking records show.

The San Bernardino County Superior Court charged Cook with murder, according to court records, which show no scheduled court date.

Cook was arrested on suspicion of killing 35-year-old Rick Hafty, sheriff's officials reported.

Ralph Williams was arrested in the 1983 death of Carla Lowe, solved by a newly formed Delray Beach Police Department cold case unit (from 1 December).

On February 27, 1993, Twin Peaks Sheriff's Station deputies responded to a call for service at a residence for a shot man. The victim was later identified as Hafty, sheriff's officials said.

Hafty was transported to San Bernardino Medical Centre and was pronounced dead from the gunshot wound. Homicide investigators responded to the location and conducted an investigation. At the time, investigators exhausted all leads and the case remained open.

 

COOK PREVIOUSLY ARRESTED

Sheriff's deputies reported that Hafty was shot in the 23500 block of Lake Drive in Crestline. An unidentified woman had called authorities to report she had shot her boyfriend after a dispute, the San Bernardino County Sun reported in 1993.

Deputies later arrested Diane Cook, then 41, of Crestline for investigation of murder, the Sun reported. Authorities did not disclose details of the investigation, including why Cook was released in the 1993 case. Authorities also did not tell what new evidence led to Cook's latest arrest.

Hafty was a native of Alhambra, California and worked as a driver for S.E. Pipeline Construction out of Santa Fe Springs.

His survivors at the time were his two daughters, his parents and a sister. A memorial service for Hafty was held at Green Acres Chapel Bloomington.

 

COLD CASE REOPENED

In June 2021, investigators from the Sheriff's Cold Case Homicide Team re-examined the case and reopened the investigation.

Since that time, investigators conducted numerous interviews and re-examined all the physical evidence related to the investigation.

Investigators eventually identified Cook of Twin Peaks as a suspect and she was arrested on Wednesday, sheriff's officials said.