Bite Mark Helps Police Identify Murder Suspect From 1994 Cold Case

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A bite mark left on the body of a murdered California woman helped police identify the suspect in connection with the case, according to a Tuesday press release from the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.

Police have identified Sharron Gadlin as the man who allegedly murdered Cheri Huss in April 1994, according to the release. Huss, who was found dead in her apartment, had been stabbed multiple times, and police said her killer had also bitten her.

Blood found at the scene of the murder was found to match saliva left in the bite mark, the release indicated. The blood left at the scene was the result of Huss trying to fight off her killer. Testing of the sample indicated the DNA of the killer was male, according to the release.


While the investigators working the case attempted to find the identity of the killer using the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS), forensic genetic genealogy helped lead them to Gadlin in February 2022, the release said. Investigators obtained a warrant for Gadlin’s DNA and “received confirmation” that his DNA sample matched that of “the DNA profile of the person suspected of murdering” Huss, according to the release.

In addition, investigators determined that Gadlin lived about 12 miles away from the murder scene in 1994. (RELATED: Police Arrest Suspect In Unsolved Murder Case From 43 Years Ago)

Gadlin was arrested March 4 and charged with Huss’ murder, the release said. He was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday.

District Attorney Mike Hestrin reacted to the news that Gadlin had been identified as Huss’ alleged killer in the press release. “I hope Cheri and her family will finally get the justice they deserve and have waited so long for,” he said.

Huss was a mother of three who lived in Desert Hot Springs, according to CBS News. She was 39-years-old at the time of her death, the Associated Press reported.