DETROIT – A war of words has erupted between two county prosecutors in the 35-year-old Oakland County Child Killing case.
Neither Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy nor Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper would go on camera with Local 4. Worthy said Cooper has compromised the case when she went public on Tuesday naming Arch Sloan, a convicted pedophile doing life in prison as a person of interest.
That new DNA links two hairs gathered from Sloan's car 35 years ago to Mark Stebbins and Timothy King, two of the four victims in the unsolved Oakland County Child killings.
The hairs are not Sloan's, but prosecutors believe it could lead to the killer.
Complete coverage: Oakland County Child Killer case
Retired homicide detective Tom Berry said he agrees with Cooper's decision to go public.
"We need the public's help identifying who he was hanging out with during this time frame," Berry said.
However, Wayne County Prosecutor Worthy unloaded, telling the Detroit News, "We have many leads that we continue to follow. In any investigation, you don't, essentially, tell your targets that you are investigating them."
Worthy also said her office insisted on having DNA tests done by the task force long before Cooper took office in 2009, and that she brought Cooper up to date on the leads generated. Then, their communications broke down.
Worthy tells the Detroit News, "Basically we have prostrated ourselves in terms of putting egos aside. I don't need a feather in my cap. my reputation has been established for years. We have worked on this consistently since 2004 and have always been able to share our information with investigating agencies. Even when they shut us out we still shared information."
Oakland County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Paul Walton told Local 4, "The investigation is moving forward. we are excited about developments and we are not interested in debating another prosecutor."
Berry said the counties should be focused on teaming up to solve the murder mystery.
"Wayne County and Oakland County should be in a partnership here to solve this crime instead of being at odds with each other," he said.
Worthy is involved in the case because one of the four children killed 35 years ago was found in Livonia.
Investigators still want to talk anyone who knew Sloan to establish the link to the hairs.
The tip line is 800- 442-7766.