Detroit-area man held in 25-year-old St. Clair County death

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Posted at 1:32 PM, Aug 06, 2022

PORT HURON, Mich. (AP) — A suburban Detroit man has been charged in connection with the slaying of a St. Clair County woman 25 years ago.

John Germain, 54, of Hartland, was arrested by Michigan State Police at his home on Tuesday in connection with the May 1997 slaying of 79-year-old Virginia Cecelia Farrell, St. Clair County Prosecutor Michael Wendling said in a statement Friday.

Germain is charged with open murder, first-degree criminal sexual conduct and breaking and entering, court records show.

Farrell was discovered beaten and stabbed to death in her Clay Township home, Wendling said.

An initial Michigan State Police cold case investigation in 2007 developed a DNA profile but no suspects were identified, Wendling said.

"A second MSP cold case investigation was initiated in 2019. Scientific and technological advances were leveraged to reevaluate DNA evidence collected from the crime scene. The result of the examination was submitted to the Combined DNA Index System. An investigative lead was developed that associated Mr. Germain with crime scene evidence," Wendling said.

Germain is being held on $1 million bond.

Amy Goodrich, an assistant prosecuting attorney, said Germaine had family in the area of the slaying.

Messages were left with Germain's attorney seeking comment on his behalf.