After weeks of searching for a break in the Karina Vetrano murder case, police may have finally found a lead. The New York Police Department released a sketch of a man who it says may be able to provide some information about the slaying of the 30-year-old jogger from Howard Beach, Queens, according to the New York Daily News. The man in the sketch is not a suspect but may have witnessed the deadly attack, police said.
“We want to speak to this person because we feel that he was there," NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said before clarifying that the man was neither a suspect nor a person of interest in Vetrano’s slaying. Boyce explained that the individual — described as having a gaunt face — was seen by several people and a utility worker on Aug. 2, the same day Vetrano was killed.
Police have advised people who see the sketch to take note of the man’s dark wool hat, considering that Vetrano was murdered on a hot summer day and it was unusual that the man was wearing a winter hat, local news outlet Pix 11 reported. The mystery man was spotted on the Belt Parkway on the north end of Spring Creek where the victim typically ran alongside her father.
The man in the sketch of is not the mystery jogger Vetrano’s father previously accused in connection to his daughter’s death. “He’s a 48-year-old man who hurt his knee and stopped jogging,” Boyce said.
His current location was not immediately unknown as Boyce said he could have gone west on the Parkway toward East New York in Brooklyn or in the opposite direction into the Ozone Park neighborhood of Queens.
Since Vetrano was killed in an isolated area with no camera surveillance cameras and without witnesses, police have had difficulty finding her killer. However, investigators created a DNA profile using a sneaker, ear bud, a used condom found at the scene and DNA discovered on Vetrano's body. The profile has yet to find a match in a nationwide database.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the reward for information leading to the arrest of Vetrano’s murderer was more than $302,000.