NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — The West Michigan man arrested 39 years after the death of a U.S. Navy wife in Norfolk, Virginia, is now facing charges of first-degree murder, rape and burglary.
Dennis Bowman, 70, of Hamilton, was originally charged only with second-degree murder in the death of Kathleen Doyle.
Doyle was found strangled and stabbed twice in the chest at her home on Sept. 11, 1980. Her husband was deployed as a Navy pilot aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Last month, Bowman told Norfolk General District Judge Robert Rigney he wants to plead guilty and act as his own attorney. Rigney appointed backup counsel to advise Bowman before accepting any plea, citing the seriousness of the charge.
The Norfolk grand jury indicted Bowman last week on the more serious murder charge and added rape and burglary. The case now shifts to Norfolk Circuit Court.
Investigators used forensic evidence to connect Bowman to the case. The arrest culminated nearly 40 years of investigation by Norfolk Police, NCIS, and state and local authorities in Michigan.
It’s unclear what connection Bowman had to Doyle or her neighborhood in 1980. Court documents show that he has a criminal record for sexual assault in 1981.
Earlier this year, authorities in Michigan announced they are also investigating whether Bowman may have killed his adopted daughter Aundria.
Aundria was 14 when she disappeared from her home in 1989. Allegan County authorities said they found human remains at the Hamilton-area property after they were told Aundria’s body may have been buried in a shallow grave.
Authorities are still working to identify the remains. Bowman is not currently charged in Aundria’s death.