Denver police solve old murder case; killer's mom had role

AP News
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Posted: Jan 30, 2015 4:09 PM

DENVER (AP) — The killer in an 18-year-old murder mystery was shielded by his mother until his own death, Denver police said Friday.

Police said Jonathan Clinton, then 20, was a suspect at the time in a case that drew wide public attention in Denver, The Denver Post reported (http://tinyurl.com/mefz6lm). But his mother, whose name was not released Friday, told investigators that he was home with her the night 67-year-old Surle Goldfogel surprised a burglar at her home and was beaten to death.

Years after Clinton's death of a drug overdose in 2003, his mother told a neighbor the truth. The neighbor called police, and the mother admitted to them that not only had her son confessed to her on the night of the murder, she had hidden him in hotels so detectives could not interview him.

The statute of limitations on accessory to murder after the fact had passed by the time of the mother's admission, District Attorney Mitch Morrissey said at a news conference. "She basically derailed the investigation," Morrissey said.

Goldfogel, a widow who was survived by two children and five grandchildren, was well known in her community. Her family released a statement that police read at Friday's news conference saying they found solace in knowing the truth and thanking detectives for pursuing the case.

"There were those knew and stayed silent which only served to generate more pain for an already raw and tattered family," the statement said. "Then there were those who did the right thing — came forward and spoke up — and to them, we are eternally grateful."