By BRAD KELLAR
Alicia Moore’s family members have been told DNA evidence linked Michael Vincent Moore of Grand Prairie to the Greenville teenager’s murder six months ago.
Jessica Byrd was told investigators only recently received the results of DNA samples obtained from family members in December.
“I was told they received it on April 30,” Byrd said, as she spoke with reporters Wednesday afternoon, shortly after meeting with detectives from the Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office and Greenville Police Department. “There’s still a few questions they can not answer.”
Meanwhile, the Greenville Police Department and the Van Zandt County District Attorney and Sheriff’s Offices released a joint statement Wednesday evening regarding the status of the investigation into the murder of Alicia Moore, which indicated they believe more than DNA ties Michael Moore to the crime.
“We anticipate the discovery of additional evidence that will further implicate Michael Vincent Moore in the murder of his 16 year old niece,” read the statement issued by Van Zandt County Chris Martin, Van Zandt County Sheriff Michael Lindsey Ray and Greenville Chief of Police Daniel J. Busken. “We have gathered items of interest during the execution of a search warrant at Mr. Moore’s residence and we are currently analyzing those items to determine their evidentiary value. We will also continue to pursue other investigative leads until we have gathered as much evidence as possible in this case.”
The statement said the investigation was still ongoing and that the investigators would continue to “ restrict the release of sensitive information” in the case.
“We are working as quickly and as diligently as possible to bring this case to a close for Alicia and her family,” said the release. “While we would like to share more information at this time, doing so could compromise our investigation and jeopardize a subsequent prosecution.”
Michael Moore, 57, was taken into custody at his Grand Prairie residence at around 9 p.m. Monday, by officers with the Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office, the Greenville Police Department and the Texas Rangers. Michael Moore was charged with one count of capital murder on an arrest warrant from Van Zandt County and was transported to the Van Zandt County jail in Canton, where he was being held Wednesday in lieu of $10 million bond.
Byrd has been the spokesperson for the family and said there still is no indication as to why Michael Moore allegedly killed Alicia Moore.
“They still don’t have a theory on that,” Byrd said, adding the family wants to speak to Michael Moore. “That’s the why question that’s on top of everybody’s head.”
Byrd added the family has yet to receive a copy of the autopsy report, but has been given details as to Alicia Moore’s cause of death.
“But as of right now, my family hasn’t given me permission to release that to you guys,” Byrd said.
Byrd said the family learned of Michael Moore’s arrest late Monday night, adding, “it was just a shock in who they arrested.”
Byrd said she is not yet completely convinced of Michael Moore’s guilt.
“I’m not going to say he did it, but he is a person of interest to me,” Byrd said.
Byrd said Michael Moore was living in Grand Prairie and taking care of his father, but was a frequent visitor to the home on Gibbons Street in Greenville.
“He’s here every weekend or every two weeks,” Byrd said, but indicated Michael Moore was not believed to have been at the residence on the afternoon of Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, the day Alicia Moore disappeared.
“He was in Grand Prairie,” Byrd said. “He was supposed to be in Grand Prairie tending to my grandfather.”
Byrd said she still needs to see more evidence before believing Michael Moore murdered Alicia Moore, adding it is not her place to condemn him.
“If it is him, again, I love him,” Byrd said. “I’m not the one to judge him. He’ll have to deal with the man upstairs for that.”