A New Mexico man has been arrested for an old California cold case murder. According to the New Mexico State Police Department, 64-year-old William Lepere has been arrested for his involvement in a 1980's cold case out of Anaheim, California. On Wednesday, April 28th, New Mexico law enforcement officials helped Anaheim officials track down and arrest Lepere in Alamogordo, New Mexico, per KRQE News. He was taken into custody and booked on murder charges stemming from the murder of 79-year-old Viola Hagenkord.

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According to the Anaheim Police Department, Hagenkord's neighbor entered her residence on February 18th, 1980 after neighbors became concerned they hadn't seen her for a few days. Neighbors said the behavior was unusual since she was well known throughout her apartment complex. Her neighbor found her deceased and police say she was sexually assaulted.

Evidence was collected at the scene of the crime but the case, unfortunately, went cold until in September of 2020 when homicide detectives reopened the case and Lepere was identified as a suspect. During the Anaheim Police Department's investigation, a search warrant was also issued on Lepere's Alamogordo home. Lepere is now currently being held without bail pending extradition proceedings according to an Anaheim Police Department Facebook post.

Comments on the post thanked the Anaheim Police Department for their continued efforts to solve this 41-year-old cold case, including one woman who saved her mother was friend's with Viola Hagenkord:

"Viola Hagenkord was my mother’s good friend, and was so upset when she found out she was murdered. Thank you APD for everything you do and keeping our community safe. God bless"

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