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Second Chance to Solve Cold Case Murder

BENTON COUNTY, AR-- A cold case is getting a second chance to be solved, and a recent attempted murder is raising some eyebrows.
Dana Stidham was murdered in Bella Vista in 1989.
Dana Stidham was murdered in Bella Vista in 1989.
Dana Stidham's final resting place at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Hiwasse.
Dana Stidham's final resting place at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Hiwasse.
BENTON COUNTY, AR -- A cold case is getting a second chance to be solved, and a recent attempted murder is raising some eyebrows.

"What we want to do is take a fresh approach, a fresh set of eyes on some of these cases, Dana Stidham being one of those."

Benton County investigators are combing through Dana Stidham's cold case, more than 20 years after her murder in Bella Vista.

"People that have been named in it before and/or we think could possibly be linked to it at this point, we'll go ahead and take a look at... The key I think to unlocking some of the clues to these cases, is what are we going to do different," said Benton County Sheriff Kelley Cradduck.

Cradduck has his team digitizing every file, box by box, hoping to track down Stidham's killer.

"There's new technology that exists that might help us uncover some clues that maybe were missed before... We are going to keep looking and sooner or later, I do believe we will find a way to solve that case."

A recent attempted murder is causing some to draw connections to Stidham's case. Orville Mitchell Goodwin was arrested back in July after police say he shot a woman in the face and left her for dead in the woods of Bella Vista.

"I don't think it would be safe for people to assume anything... There's not one case in particular that you could say definitely we've opened up a cold case because of that."

The focus for Cradduck is letting Stidham's family know, they will not stop until her case is solved.

"If it was your kid or my kid, then I think you would expect law enforcement to keep working on it and not just give up ever."

And if someone out there knows something, it is never too late to lead investigators in the right direction.

"The bottom line is that someone is out there who committed this heinous crime and they've not been brought to justice."

Sheriff Cradduck is currently working to get a cold case unit together at the Benton County Sheriff's Office. While they only have a small number of cold cases, he wants to make sure justice is served in each one.



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