- Associated Press - Thursday, June 5, 2014

MINOT, N.D. (AP) - DNA evidence could be key in solving the killing of a Minot State University student seven years ago, an investigator says.

Anita Knutson, 18, of Butte, was found stabbed to death in her locked apartment on June 4, 2007. Investigators were unable to solve the crime or even identify a suspect and it now is officially classified as a cold case.

Authorities did recover some DNA evidence, however. If the killer is ever arrested for another crime, his or her DNA would be put into a national database and that could be the break investigators need, Police Lt. Jason Sundbakken told KXMC-TV (https://bit.ly/1oeYfeH ).

A resolution also could rely on luck, he said.

“In many cases like this, that go on for a long time, it is just a matter of getting lucky with a tip - someone talking who didn’t talk before, something of that nature,” he said.

Knutson’s father discovered the body of his adopted daughter in her bed. Authorities said she was not the victim of a sex crime, and nothing was believed to be missing from her apartment. Police recovered blood and fingerprint evidence from the scene, as well as a knife.

Knutson’s female roommate was questioned, along with many of her fellow students. A maintenance man who made early morning rounds at the apartment complex and later committed suicide was never named as a suspect. A person who had seen a man running from the scene gave investigators a description that was used to make a picture released to the public, but the possible suspect turned out to be a jogger.

“It is frustrating that we can’t get a resolution for the family, and for Anita,” Sundbakken said.

“At the onset of this case we didn’t feel that it would be seven years later and here we are without a resolution,” he said.

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Information from: KXMC-TV, https://www.kxnet.com

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