The half-brother of a woman killed 21 years ago has been charged with murder after police extracted DNA from a conch shell used to kill her

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David Reed, accused of bludgeoning his half-sister Rose Marie Moniz to death with a conch shell, was arraigned Friday in Fall River Superior Court on charges of murder and armed robbery.

The 53-year-old former Acushnet and New Bedford resident was held without bond. A plea of ​​not guilty was entered by Reed’s attorney, Frank Camera, on Herald News reported.

Reed allegedly bludgeoned her stepsister with the shell, a fireplace poker and a cast iron kettle at her New Bedford home in March 2001, prosecutors said. Moniz, 41, was found dead on her bathroom floor, with kitchen items strewn around the house, and her purse emptied on the living room floor with missing cash, the office said. of the Bristol District Attorney.

For 18 years, the case remained silent. But in 2019, unsolved case investigators from the District Attorney’s Office speculated that for the killer to hold the shell firmly enough to use as a lethal weapon, the person must have placed their fingers in the shell opening.

DNA testing from inside the hull revealed a full DNA profile – that of Reed, the victim’s half-brother, officials said.

“[Moniz] was a mother who was brutally murdered in the sanctity of her own home,” Quinn said in December 2021. “Through the efforts of my Cold Case Unit, as well as detectives from our State Police Unit and New Bedford Police, we were able to bring some relief to the victim’s family, all of whom have suffered over the past 20 years from not knowing what happened to Ms. Moniz.

Reed had already been held without bond since October 2021 after being arrested in Rhode Island in September following an arraignment in connection with the 2003 beating and robbery of Maribel Martinez-Alegria in New Bedford.

Reed is due back in court on March 7 for a pretrial conference and again on July 18 for a pretrial hearing, the Herald reported.

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