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Norwalk Police Cold Case Arrest for 1988 Sexual Assault

Osvaldo Muniz. Credit: Norwalk Police Dept.
Osvaldo Muniz. Credit: Norwalk Police Dept.
The following is a press release from Norwalk Police Dept.
On Friday, Dec. 6, 2013 at approximately 11:15 a.m., Lt. Art Weisgerber and Sgt. Alex Tolnay arrested Osvaldo Muniz, 66, at his place of employment in Bridgeport.

The arrest stems from a 1988 Cold Case investigation into a kidnapping and sexual assault that occurred at approximately 4:50 a.m. on Aug. 4, 1988 on Wolfpit Ave. in Norwalk.
 
At the time in 1988, the 19-year-old female victim had been staying with friends at 129 Wolfpit Ave.

The victim was awoken by footsteps upstairs on the main floor and went to see if it was her girlfriend arriving home. As the victim exited the basement and entered the first floor hall, she was grabbed from behind with a hand over her mouth and a large knife put to her neck.

The victim was dragged out of the house, across the front lawn and across a second lawn with a wooded edge where she was then sexually assaulted.

The case was investigated and a composite sketch was released to the public. Several leads were called in but a suspect was never identified and the case went cold.

In 2011, Lt. Weisgerber continued to review and organize major unsolved cases in the Norwalk Police Department and reviewed this case file.

It was noted that some of the evidence might now be suitable for DNA analysis that was not possible in 1988. With the assistance of the Biology and DNA Sections at the State of Connecticut Forensic Laboratory in Meriden in August of 2013, evidence collected in 1988 was examined and analyzed for DNA.

The State Laboratory was able to develop an offender DNA profile from the 1988 evidence and submit the profile into the State of Connecticut Offender DNA Database and received a hit on the DNA on October 15, 2013. The hit identified Osvaldo Muniz, date of birth 10-21-47 as the offender.

On November 4, 2013, Lt. Weisgerber and Sgt. Tolnay received a search and seizure warrant to collect a confirmatory sample of DNA from Osvaldo Muniz so the State Laboratory could complete the analysis and issue an official DNA report.

On Nov. 5, 2013, the search and seizure warrant was served on Muniz at his Bridgeport residence and delivered to the State Laboratory on Nov. 6, 2013.

On Dec. 4, 2013, Lt. Weisgerber received a “DNA Database Hit Report” from the DNA Section of the State Laboratory that identified and confirmed Osvaldo Muniz, date of birth 10-21-47 as the offender in the case.

On Dec. 5, 2013, Lt. Weisgerber applied for an arrest warrant for Osvaldo Muniz for the 1988 kidnapping and sexual assault at Stamford Superior Court and the warrant was issued that afternoon.

CHARGES:
Kidnapping in the First Degree – 53a-92
(Class A Felony 10 - 25 years) 
 
Aggravated Sexual in the First Degree – 53a-70a 
(Class B Felony 1 - 20 years; 5 year minimum mandatory) 
 
Court set bond for Muniz at $500,000. He has a date scheduled in Norwalk Superior Court on Dec. 16, 2013.

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