Crime Law

Man tied to unsolved rapes, slaying may never be arrested

TACOMA, Wash. — Pierce County investigators said they connected a cold case unsolved slaying and two rapes to the same man using DNA evidence, but the man may never be arrested.

Investigators faced three unsolved crimes -- two rapes that took place in a garage in a south Tacoma neighborhood and a slaying that happened 10 years ago.

It was March 2002 when the body of Sharon Van Gilder was found dumped along a road in Spanaway.

Pierce County and Tacoma police detectives were able to use DNA evidence from that crime scene and two unsolved rapes to tie the crimes to Miguel Urbano-Vazquez.

“It took a while to put all this together because we don’t have a lot of family members on one side. The suspect is from out of the country and has been deported, so it was really the science that helped us tie all this together,” said Pierce County sheriff’s Det. Ed Troyer.

With Vazquez recently deported to Mexico, investigators said the chances of an arrest in the case are slim.

Police are unsure where he is in Mexico or how to track him down, but will contact authorities there.