A man who police say murdered a California woman and dumped her body on the side of the road in Texas was arrested after remaining free for nearly 30 years, according to the District Attorney's Office of Riverside.
In late May, Texas Rangers arrested Douglas Thomas, 67, in connection to the death of another woman whose body was found in Titus County, Texas in April 1992. Authorities used DNA to connection Thomas to that murder.
Police later connected Thomas' DNA to the killing of Sherri Herrera, 30, a mother of four from Tulare, California whose body was found March 30, 1993, on the eastbound Hayfield Road onramp to 1-10 in Desert Center, Texas. She had been last seen a few days before her body was discovered.
Investigators with the Riverside Country Regional Cold Case Team, which is led by the DA's Bureau of Investigation, went to Texas to interview Thomas about Herrera's murder. Based on the investigation, the DA charged Thomas in connection with that case.
Thomas, a recently retired cross-country truck driver was charged with murder and a special cirumstance allegation of murder during the commission of a rape on June 10, 2022, the Riverside DA announced. During his career, he drove extensively throughout the United States in 40-plus years on the road, according to police.
Thomas remains incarcerated in Texas, where he'll be prosecuted on the first murder charge. The DA's office will then request his extradition to California to face the murder charge related to Herrera.
The Riverside DA's office asks anyone with information on Herrera or Thomas to contact them at 951-955-2777.
The Regional Cold Case Homicide Team is comprised of members of the DA’s Office Bureau of Investigation, the Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner Department, the FBI and the Riverside Police Department.