Harold Jarrell

Harold Warren Jarrell has been identified as the lead suspect in the September 20, 1982 rape and murder of 8-year-old Kelly Ann Prosser in Columbus, Ohio. The case has been cleared by exception due to the death of Jarrell.

Prosser was abducted while walking home from her elementary school. Her body was found in a cornfield two days later. She had been raped, beaten, and strangled to death.

The FGG investigation was conducted by Advance DNA. The final confirmation was made with the assistance of a living relative of Jarrell’s.

Jarrell himself passed away in 1996 at the age of 67. He had been convicted in 1977 of child sex crimes that involved the abduction of another 8-year-old girl. He served about 5 years for this offence, and was released in early 1982, shortly before the murder of Prosser. Jarrell’s family cooperated in the investigation.


Associated Press. “Police Solve Case of Girl Abducted, Raped, Killed in 1982.” Oakland Press, June 27, 2020. Accessed December 23, 2020. https://www.theoaklandpress.com/news/state/police-solve-case-of-girl-abducted-raped-killed-in-1982/article_8efeb372-b87a-11ea-844c-4b523d9df5fd.html.

Bruner, Bethany. “Columbus Police Close 1982 Homicide with Help of Podcast, Family DNA Database.” The Columbus Dispatch, reprinted in The Toronto Star, June 27, 2020. Accessed December 23, 2020. https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2020/06/27/columbus-police-close-1982-homicide-with-help-of-podcast-family-dna-database.html.

Cohen, Sam. “Killer Identified 38 Years After Young Girl Goes Missing on Walk Home.” The Denver Channel, June 26, 2020. Accessed December 23, 2020. https://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/national/killer-identified-38-years-after-young-girl-goes-missing-on-walk-home.

Taylor, Michelle. “DNA, Genetic Genealogy Solve 1982 Murder of 8-Year-Old Girl.” Forensic Magazine, July 1, 2020. Accessed December 23, 2020. https://www.forensicmag.com/565869-DNA-Genetic-Genealogy-Solve-1982-Murder-of-8-Year-Old-Girl/.


First Name Harold
Last Name Jarrell
Other Names
Victims 1 (Details)
IGG Started 2019-12-01
Case Cleared 2020-06-26
IGG Org Advance DNA


Case ID Name Age Case Opened Location Investigating Org Most Serious Charge Disposition Court
1388 Kelly Prosser 8 1982-09-20 Columbus, OH Columbus PD; OH BI Second degree murder Case was cleared by exception due to death of perpetrator n/a

Last updated: February 9, 2024

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Case data and narrative licensed under CC BY 4.0: Dowdeswell, Tracey (2023), “Forensic Genetic Genealogy Project v. 2022”, Mendeley Data, V1, doi: 10.17632/jcycgvhm96.1. All other content, including photos, have been added.