General Crime

* John William Kelley sex offender arrested for 1986 kidnapping, rape and murder of 17-year old Annette Thur

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San Mateo County sheriff’s deputies arrested a Placerville man Wednesday in connection with the kidnapping, rape and murder of a 17-year-old girl in 1986 in an unincorporated area of San Mateo County. Sheriff’s deputies arrested 49-year-old John William Kelley in Placerville, located in El Dorado County, after an interview and sufficient probable cause was established Wednesday, sheriff’s deputies said.

Kelley is being held on suspicion of murdering Annette Thur, whose body was found down an embankment off of Skyline Boulevard, north of Alpine Road, in unincorporated San Mateo County on Dec. 9, 1986, according to the sheriff’s office. The investigation into the incident determined that Thur had attended a party in Boulder Creek early the previous morning.

She left the party and intended to hitchhike back to her home a couple of miles away in Ben Lomond in Santa Cruz County. A tourist who stopped to admire the view from Skyline Boulevard found Thur’s body, deputies said. The initial investigation determined that Thur had been sexually assaulted, but no person was identified as a likely suspect at the time. In 2012, evidence from Thur’s murder was re-analyzed by the San Mateo County Forensic Laboratory and a DNA profile linked Kelley to the crime.

Kelley is a registered sex offender who has lived in both California and Oregon, deputies said. Following his arrest, Kelley was transported to San Mateo County and booked into the Maguire Correctional Facility on suspicion of kidnapping, rape and murder, according to the sheriff’s office. The case has been referred to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution and Kelley was scheduled for arraignment today.

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