New Haven, Conn. (WTNH) - After 7 years of searching, police have identified a suspect in the horrific murders of a homeless couple living in an abandoned building in New Haven.
The victims families say despite all these years, they never gave up hope that the killer would be brought to justice.
"Today, this police department brings justice to a family that has waited all these years," said New Haven Police Chief Dean Esserman at a press conference.
On July 24, 2004, 37-year-old Louise Soules and 38-year-old Michael Mobley were savagely attacked while they were sleeping in an abandoned building on Grand Avenue. Their bodies were discovered by another homeless person.
The couple was so badly beaten, they were almost unidentifiable.
"He beat my aunt and Mike Mobley badly, the only way to identify them is by dental and fingerprint and a person like that shouldn't be like that, they should be locked up forever," said Soules' nephew Charles Dohna.
The suspect in the case, 59-year-old Charles Levine, has a long record, spanning several states. His priors include sexual assault, kidnapping and a variety of assault charges.
Police caught their big break in 2009 when a detective received a tip.
"A concerned citizen said that Charlie Levine had bragged to them about committing the double homicide on Grand Avenue," explained Sgt. Tony Reyes.
However, Levine, wasn't easy to track down.
He finally turned up in Florida where he was arrested for domestic dispute.
New Haven police got a warrant for a DNA sample. They compared Levine's sample to forensics found inside the Grand Avenue building, and got a match. Levine is now charged with two counts of murder.
"We've waited a long time," said Mobley's sister, Angela, "we didn't think that the case would ever be closed, we never gave up hope, we kept praying."
The families say, after years of not knowing, it was hard to go on.
"Lot, lot of heaviness on your body, you know, knowing, trying to figure out, trying to rack our brain, find out," said Dohna.
Police did not discuss a motive, but there was evidence that the attack may have been sexual.
Police are still trying to answer those lingering questions, but for now, they're just happy to provide some closure to two families who never gave up and never forgot.
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