US & Canada

US 'killer clown' case: Woman is arrested for 1990 murder

Sheila Keen Warren (File photo) Image copyright Palm Beach Sherrif's Office
Image caption Police say the new DNA evidence proves the person disguised as a clown was Sheila Keen Warren (above)

Police in the US state of Virginia have arrested a woman who allegedly dressed as a clown to kill her future husband's former wife nearly 30 years ago.

Sheila Keen Warren allegedly shot Marlene Warren in 1990. Officers have described the case as bizarre.

Police say they have been able to re-open their investigation because new DNA evidence has materialised.

They say Ms Warren has long been a suspect in the killing, but there has not been enough evidence.

The 1990 shooting took place in Wellington, Florida on 26 May.

According to police, Ms Warren answered the door to accept a bouquet and balloons from a clown wearing a red wig, a red bulb nose, gloves and a smile painted on its white face.

Ms Warren was then shot at least once in the face, after which the clown is reported to have calmly walked to a white convertible car - without a number plate - and driven away.

The 40-year-old victim died in hospital two days later.

Police say now new DNA evidence proves the person disguised as a clown was Sheila Keen Warren, 54, the current wife of Ms Warren's former husband Michael Warren.

She was arrested in Washington County, Virginia, on Tuesday and is awaiting extradition to Florida.

Police have not said whether Mr Warren was involved in his former wife's death and it is not clear whether Mrs Keen Warren contests the allegations.

The case - which had gone cold - was reopened in 2014 by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

"Witnesses were re-contacted and additional DNA analysis was conducted," the office said.

"It was also learned that Sheila Keen had married Michael Warren, Marlene Warren's husband, in 2002. Both had been living in Tennessee operating a restaurant together.

"As a result of the investigation, probable cause was established linking Sheila Keen Warren to the murder of Marlene Warren."

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