Central Texas Man Sentenced In 20-Year-Old Texas Murder Case

(October 9, 2007)--A Round Rock man was sentenced Tuesday to 30 years in prison for a 1987 murder that was unsolved for nearly two decades.

Forty-two-year-old Joseph Scott Hatley pleaded guilty to murder.

Hatley had faced trial next week.

Hatley was arrested last year after Stephenville cold-case detectives matched his fingerprints to those found near the body of 30-year-old Susan Woods.

Woods, who knew Hatley through a relative, was found dead in 1987 in her water-filled bathtub.

A coroner determined she died from asphyxiation or drowning.

Authorities said Woods was killed after someone tried to rape her.

Detectives at first couldn't identify the fingerprints through a national database.

Hatley wasn't in the system.

But when the case was recently re-opened, the prints matched Hatley. who'd since been convicted of robbery.

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