DA says fiber evidence proves who killed Harms

SAN JOSE, Calif.

Harms disappeared on July 27, 2001. The district attorney says he's convinced Maurice Nasmeh killed Harms after having a beer together at her Los Gatos home.

"Maurice Nasmeh murdered Ms. Sanchez Harms, concealed her body in her Persian rug, and used his Jeep Cherokee to dispose of her body," said district attorney Jeff Rosen.

Rosen points to what he calls indisputable scientific analysis of 27 rug fibers found in the Jeep Cherokee that came from two rugs belonging to the murder victim. The exhaustive forensic testing by micro-trace in Illinois took three years to complete.

"I just wish we could have gotten these results six months or a year sooner, but the science only works as fast as the science does and it doesn't work on a CSI schedule," said Rosen.

One of the many sad twists in this case is that authorities arrested Nasmeh in late 2004 but were forced to release him in 2007 when questions were raised about the original evidence testing of those rug fibers.

Even with the meticulous re-testing, Nasmeh will never face a jury. In January, Harms' brother Wayne followed Nasmeh into a Peet's coffee shop in west San Jose, killed him and then killed himself.

Police are hoping someone comes forward with information that reveals where Harms' body can be found.

"The family is suffering and continues to suffer and will always suffer without an answer," said Chief Scott Seaman of the Los Gatos/Monte Sereno Police Department.

The district attorney vowed his office would work on the case until it was solved, and now the evidence finally supports what the family always believed.

"Justice didn't happen quickly enough in this case. Despite all of our best efforts, justice didn't come quickly enough, and for that I am deeply sorry to the Sanchez Harms family."

Copyright © 2024 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.