Anderson Aldrich: Fragments of a troubled young life emerge, but mysteries remain
A young woman’s life was dramatically cut short at the age of 19 on Sept. 6, 1991, when she was abducted from her family’s suburban Chicago home. Her abductor, a man whose name has been in the national news recently, was armed with a gun and took her to a deserted area of Lake County where he raped her. Police say he told her to be quiet after he raped her. She was bound for a week while he was being questioned, and eventually sent to the local hospital with a gunshot wound to the head. Her parents, who had recently bought her a car, spent much of the next year trying to find someone to care for their daughter. When they could not, they took her to the Illinois State Medical Examiner to identify her and get a DNA profile.
But a few weeks later, when she was 21, police arrived at her apartment, found her naked, bound and gagged in a crawl space, and shot her dead. Police now say that they think her abductor was a man in his mid-30s who may have killed her as part of a sexual fantasy. He was arrested on the scene.
In the days after the shooting, police did not know what to make of everything. At the time, they were unable to find the gunman, police said. Since then, the local police agency, Chicago Police Department, has conducted a new investigation, which led to the arrests of Michael Aldrich, 40, now in the Cook County Jail, and his nephew, Joseph D. Spagnolo, 28, who was driving the getaway car, police said.
After police questioned the two in the car, Aldrich confessed to shooting her, police said. The two were charged with first-degree murder today while Spagnolo was charged with involuntary manslaughter. Aldrich also faces a kidnapping charge and a gun charge for the kidnapping and shooting.
In the years that followed, Aldrich, who was a convicted felon, told friends and acquaintances that he had