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'He's going to pay the consequences': Killer sentenced in 1981 slaying of Cherry Hills Village woman

David Anderson was linked to the death of Sylvia Quayle in 2021 through DNA left on a vanilla coke can.

CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE, Colo. — Exactly 41 years to the day that Sylvia Quayle was found murdered in her Cherry Hills Village home, her killer was sentenced to life in prison.

David Anderson will be eligible for parole after 20 years due to the sentencing guidelines that were in place in 1981 when the crime occurred.

"He needs to pay the consequences for what he's done. And he did, today, he's going to pay the consequences for what he's done," said Jo Hamit, Quayle's sister.

Anderson was found guilty in June of two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the death of Quayle, the 18th Judicial District Attorney's Office said. One murder count alleged Quayle was killed after deliberation, while the other alleged she was killed in the commission of another felony.

>The video above is a prior report about Anderson's arrest in the case.

He was arrested in Nebraska in February 2021. The case originally went to trial in March, but the judge declared a mistrial when the jury was unable to reach a verdict. 

Quayle was found dead in her home on Ogden Street in Cherry Hills Village on Aug. 4, 1981. The coroner determined she had been stabbed multiple times and shot in the head. She had also been sexually assaulted.

"It's beyond me to look at [Anderson] and think, how could a human being do that to another human being?" Hamit said. "[Sylvia] was a wonderful person. She was full of life, happy, creative."

RELATED: Jury fails to reach verdict in 1981 cold case killing, sex assault in Cherry Hills Village

The case went unsolved for decades. In 2000, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) submitted a DNA sample to the FBI's Combined DNA Index System, but that sample remained unidentified until 2020. That's when Cherry Hills Village police began working with a genetic genealogy company. The company gave the police department a possible lead after the samples were entered into two public DNA databases.

Credit: ACSO
David Anderson

The next year, an investigator with the company went to Anderson's apartment building in Nebraska, collected trash bags from a dumpster, and found a soda can he had thrown away. DNA from that matched the DNA collected at the crime scene. 

"It's very sad that [Sylvia] can't be here. I miss her every day, but, in lieu of that, justice was served," Hamit said.

RELATED: DNA from Vanilla Coke can ties Nebraska man to Cherry Hills Village cold case

SUGGESTED VIDEOS: Colorado cold cases  

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