CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — An arrest has been made in a nearly four-decade-old cold case murder of a mother and her 10-year-old son at a Charlotte home, according to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.
Police said Sarah Mobley Hall, 27, and her son, Derrick Mobley, were found strangled to death on March 14, 1984, at home on Ventura Way in the Hidden Valley neighborhood.
Almost 39 years later, investigators said they matched DNA from the crime scene to James Thomas Pratt. He was arrested at a hotel in York County, South Carolina, on Feb. 1, 2023.
CMPD said Pratt, who had never been considered a suspect, was identified as a person of interest after DNA samples from the crime scene were submitted for “familial DNA testing” and compared to the government database.
The DNA got a hit to one of Pratt’s DNA relatives and he was “quickly” identified as a person of interest. Investigators said they acquired Pratt’s DNA in South Carolina and it came back as a direct match to the sample.
Police said Pratt fully cooperated with detectives. He was charged with two counts of murder and was not given a bond.