New Bedford Conch Shell Murder Suspect to Be Arraigned
FALL RIVER — The suspect in the 2001 New Bedford cold case murder of Rose Marie Moniz, who was bludgeoned to death with a conch shell, a fireplace poker, and a kettle, will be arraigned at the Fall River Justice Center tomorrow morning.
The Bristol County District Attorney's Office said 53-year-old David Reed, formerly of Dartmouth, Acushnet, and New Bedford, will be arraigned at 9 a.m. Friday for the murder of Moniz, who was his half sister.
He also faces armed robbery charges in connection to the previously unsolved case.
Reed is being held without bail and has already been arraigned in connection to a separate case, the 2003 assault and robbery of Maribel Martinez-Alegria in New Bedford.
His arraignment on the murder charges had previously been scheduled for December, but was postponed after Reed was exposed to COVID.
Friday's arraignment will be handled by Deputy District Attorney William McCauley and Assistant District Attorney Caleb Weiner, according to the D.A.'s office.
The charges come after cold case unit investigators re-examined evidence in the 2001 murder, in which the 41-year-old victim's father found her body on the bathroom floor at her Acushnet Avenue home when he came to take her to a doctor's appointment.
Investigators at the time found that Moniz had been killed with blunt force trauma, but the case went cold.
However, in 2019, cold case unit investigators saw that abrasions from a conch shell used to bludgeon the victim's head suggested the murderer put his fingers inside the shell.
Testing inside of the shell revealed a DNA profile that pointed to Reed, the D.A.'s office said.
Reed had been on the lam for almost a decade after skipping bail in relation to a separate attack on Martinez-Alegria in 2003.
He was captured on Sept. 10 in Providence, according to the D.A.'s office.
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