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Suspect charged with murder in 30-year-old Waco cold case

Harold Givens
Harold Givens(ARREST PHOTO OBTAINED BY KWTX)
Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 6:20 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The Waco Police Department on Tuesday, June 21, announced it had solved a 30-year-old cold case and arrested Harold Givens, 65, in the murder of 28-year-old Rita Davis.

Police said Davis was found dead on September 22, 1991, near 7th and McKinney, missing her pants and underwear.

Detectives learned that on the night of September 21, 1991, Davis was with Harold Givens and the two were allegedly smoking crack cocaine when they got into a fight, police said.

An autopsy was conducted and found that Davis died due to blunt force injuries to the head and hemorrhaging in the neck. A sexual assault examination was conducted and semen was recovered.

In 1991, a detective obtained blood samples and a saliva swab from Givens, but due to the technology at the time, they were not able to connect Givens’ and Davis’ samples and an arrest could not be made, police said.

This case went cold until 2006 when a detective retested the samples using advanced DNA techniques.

“Major profiling came back consistent with Davis and minor profiling consistent with Givens,” police said.

In 2022, a cold case detective and a special crimes detective re-interviewed Givens.

Givens allegedly told the investigators he became angry with Davis because she wanted more crack cocaine and he struck her multiple times.

Givens was arrested without incident at his residence in Waco on June 21, 2022.

A timeline of events in between the DNA retesting in 2006 and Givens’ arrest in 2022 was not provided.

Online jail records show Givens is charged with murder. A bond amount is not listed.

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