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Police arrest man for 2004 murder of Waterbury teen

Jessica Keyworth was found strangled in a stairwell; almost 17 years later Willie Robinson is charged with her murder.

WATERBURY, Conn. — (Note: above video is from 2007)

On June 1, 2004 at 1:13 p.m., Waterbury Police were called to 23-25 Pearl Street. The body of 16-year-old Jessica Rose Keyworth had been found in the stairwell of the multi-unit residential building. An autopsy determined she had been strangled to death. 

On Saturday, police announced that they had charged 52-year-old Willie F. Robinson with her murder. 

Robinson faces one count of murder and is being held on $2 million bail. It wasn't immediately known if he had retained an attorney who could comment on the charge. Police are scheduled to hold a news conference on Monday.

A news release from the Waterbury Police Department didn't specify what evidence led them to suspect Robinson, but Police Chief Fernando Spagnolo told the Waterbury Republican-American that investigators were aided by DNA technology and forensic science.

Keyworth was a student at a Job Corps center in Massachusetts and was visiting friends and family in Connecticut when she was killed, the newspaper reported. She arrived by train in Waterbury late on the night of May 30 to meet up with a classmate. It is unknown how she ended up at the four-story building where she was found.

"We're so happy that we can bring some closure and justice for the girl's family," Spagnolo told the newspaper. "A lot of it had to do with a lot of perseverance by the detectives involved in the case."