Michigan State Police have positively identified a Michigan couple as the bodies found nearly 40 years ago along I-55 near the Missouri-Arkansas border.
Police believe the pair, identified as James Hendricks of Flint and Kimberlin Mills of Millington, was murdered by the same suspect.
The bodies were located on June 17, 1978, about 12 miles apart in Mississippi County, Arkansas, and Pemiscot County, Missouri.
Neither Mills nor Hendricks had been reported as missing from Michigan 40 years ago. Police initially believed Hendricks, a parole absconder, had fled the state with his girlfriend Mills.
The investigation into their deaths then went cold for nearly four decades.
That changed in May 2017, when the Missouri State Highway Patrol reran partial fingerprints from Hendricks through a national database and found a match with Michigan Department of Corrections records.
The Wexford County Sheriff’s Department notified the Hendricks family, now living in the Cadillac area and learned of Mills. Members of the MSP Caro Post contacted the Mills family and a new missing persons case was opened.
Family reference DNA was collected from a brother in Maine and sent to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System lab at the University of North Texas to be uploaded into the Combined DNA Index System and compared against the Arkansas unsolved human remains case.
The Arkansas State Crime Lab, State Medical Examiner confirmed Mills’ identification in December 2017.