Man Admits Raping Girl, Killing Her With Sink In 1987
A man accused of raping and killing a girl in 1987 after DNA evidence tied him to the crime has admitted his guilt.
Christopher Ballard told a three-judge panel on Thursday that he raped Tina Dukes, 11, in October 1987 at a house on John Street.
Ballard said that he also killed Dukes by smashing her face with a sink.
Police found her body on Oct. 18, nine days after she was reported missing by her mother.
Ballard was identified as a suspect based on a DNA sample he provided when he was released from the Pickaway Correctional Institution in Orient in 2005, authorities said.
“I just thank God for DNA, because (if it) hadn't been for DNA, they never would have found him,” said Thomas Dukes, the victim’s uncle. “He had no intention of turning himself in.”
The judges will decide on Feb. 1 whether to accept Ballard's plea, and he could also be sentenced in the same hearing.
Ballard could get the death penalty, prosecutors said.
“He needs to rot in hell for what he did, the way he did it, burnt that baby's body like that,” said Anthony Dukes, the victim’s uncle and pastor. “He needs to rot in hell.”