It's rare that a murder case that's gone unsolved for almost three decades ever gets closed. It's almost unimaginable when that happens twice on the same day.
But that's what took place Tuesday, as police arrested one man walking out of a downstate Illinois prison and one man in his home in Tennessee for two separate Chicago-area murders from 28 years ago.
In one case, the break came suddenly, when federal grant money paid for DNA testing that tied a longtime criminal to a stabbing. In the other, diligent police work has kept the case alive since it began, and ultimately led witnesses to cooperate.
On the night of February 2, 1983, CTA bus driver Hosey Reynolds was in his kitchen in Chicago's South Side when a man broke into the house, stabbed him to death, and stole his stereo, speakers and Toyota Celica.
The car was crashed into a pole not far from the house, and it was left abandoned, with a bloody T-shirt inside, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
Investigators saved the shirt, although extensive DNA testing wasn't available to them at the time. It sat in an evidence locker for 25 years, until 2009, when a Department of Justice grant allowed investigators to send it to the Illinois Crime Lab for analysis.
According to the Chicago Tribune, that analysis produced a hit months later, tying Anthony Kemp to the murder. Kemp was serving time at the Centralia prison in southern Illinois for drug possession; he had been in and out of jail for rape and armed violence for much of the last 20 years.
Prosecutors had him re-swabbed for DNA, confirming the match, and on Tuesday, as he walked out the front door of Centralia, they were there with a warrant for his arrest in Reynolds' murder.
Months before Reynolds' death, in June of 1982, Carlton Richmond was shot dead in a garage in suburban Round Lake Beach, Illinois. The garage was used as the clubhouse for a motorcycle club of which Richmond was a member, and there was a party for the group on the day Richmond was killed there, according to the Sun-Times.
From the beginning, local police suspected Robert "Bobby" Bostic, then 42, in the murder. They put together a reasonably good case, but it wasn't strong enough to get a prosecution. And of the many partygoers who witnessed the crime, none would talk to police.
Still, officers kept coming back to the case off and on over the years. Eventually, with the passage of time, witnesses began to open up about what they'd seen. Tuesday, as police were waiting outside of Centralia's doors for Anthony Kemp, Lake County Judge Raymond Collins was issuing an arrest warrant for Bostic, now living in Kingston, Tennessee, the Tribune reports.
Roane County, TN authorities helped track Bostic down at his home, where the now-70-year-old was arrested without incident.
"It's a very joyous day," Richmond's youngest daughter Nancy Ure said to the Trib. "This is the closure that my parents were never able to see."