WASHINGTON — A Virginia man has been sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for the 1984 killing of a woman at her Washington apartment.

Prosecutors said in a statement that 58-year-old Joe Anthony Barber, formerly of Woodbridge, Virginia, was sentenced Friday. Prosecutors say DNA evidence led to Barber’s arrest in the death of 43-year-old Rachel Cox, who was found dead on Jan. 1, 1984.

Prosecutors say that DNA taken from the victim’s body during her 1984 autopsy was submitted for analysis in 2013 and led to Barber’s arrest. Prosecutors say Barber’s DNA was in a national database because of an unrelated 1984 rape case in which he pleaded guilty and served nearly 20 years.

A telephone message seeking comment left with Barber’s attorney Saturday was not immediately returned.

VIAThe Associated Press
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