Published January 9 2013
Following a cold-case investigation by Bellevue Police, King County prosecutors today filed a first-degree murder charge in connection with a 1980 murder-rape case in Bellevue.
Police used DNA forensic evidence found at the crime scene to identify Michael Allan Halgren, 56, who was charged with the murder of 19 year-old Susan Barbara Lowe on April 23, 1980.
The case went cold after all investigative leads were exhausted in the early 1980s. However, Bellevue detectives continued to investigate the case on and off for the next three decades.
Halgren's DNA profile was obtained as part of an updating process in 2012 that included a number of civilly committed sexually violent predators at the McNeil Island Special Commitment Center (SCC).
Halgren had been found to be a sexually violent predator and was civilly committed to the SCC. Halgren's criminal history also includes a 1989 kidnapping/rape of a Bellevue woman and other crimes in Seattle.
With the new lead, Bellevue Police detectives renewed their investigative efforts on this cold case. In cooperation with the King County Prosecutor's Cold Case Unit, a charge of first-degree murder was filed. Detectives went to McNeil Island SCC where an arrest was made. Halgren was subsequently transferred to King County Jail on a no bail bond.
"Itâ€™s always rewarding to solve any case, but especially a cold case," said Bellevue Police Detective Lt. Jim Hershey. "To assist in some way the long awaited closure for family members of their loved one, is gratifying not only for family members but for all us at the Department."