Orange County

Cold case solved: Orange County detectives arrest man connected to 1997 murder

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A man faces second-degree murder charges after he was connected to the murder of a woman who was strangled in April 1997.

Detectives said they were able to identify Jimmy Lee Mahone as the killer and arrested him in Bibb County, Georgia, on Tuesday.

On April 16, 1997, Orange County deputies said they were dispatched to 2002 Lee Street for a possible burglary.

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When they arrived, they said they found Donna Byrd dead inside the house. Investigators said she was strangled.

They said the crime scene included a “couple of fingerprints in blood inside the apartment, but the original investigation was unable to identify the fingerprints.”

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During a review by the OCSO Cold Case unit, the prints were resubmitted for review in September.

Investigators said they were able to identify the prints and found they belonged to Mahone.

On Tuesday, detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Mahone, charging him with second-degree murder.

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Katlyn Brieskorn,

Katlyn Brieskorn is a Digital Assignment Editor at WFTV. She joined Channel 9 in July 2019.