An Indiana man who killed an 82-year-old woman inside her home had denied it to police. A beer can proved to be his downfall.
Matthew Hoover, of Steuben County, Indiana, was sentenced to 95 years in October, according to WPTA. He was given 65 years for murder and 30 years for Level 2 burglary. Hoover pleaded guilty to the charges despite previously stating that he was not involved.
According to WANE, Wilma Ball was found stabbed to death on June 23, 2021, inside her lakefront home near Lake James. A neighbor of the woman told police that his brother, later identified as Hoover, could have been involved, according to a probable cause affidavit.
The man told police that Hoover had just quit his job all of a sudden, moved out of his home the day before the incident and stole his parents' truck to drive to Yorktown, the affidavit states. According to documents, Hoover walked to Anderson, which is 12 miles away.
Police later found Hoover at a home in rural Yorktown, and he voluntarily provided a DNA sample, according to WANE. Hoover told police he had never been in the woman's home and that he didn't kill Ball. However, Steuben County Prosecutor Jeremy Muss noted that a detective testified that Hoover admitted to the killing.
The probable cause affidavit states that police found a beer can on a nightstand next to the bed in which Ball was found dead. It proved to have Hoover's DNA on it, according to court documents.
“We will move forward because we have each other to stand strong We have great memories that were shared in court today," Lora Hostetler, Ball's daughter, told WANE. "We know that she will never be forgotten, or even the tragic accident will never be forgotten, in the community, but we will continue to honor her and feel her presence in everything that we do”