Advertisement

Loading...

Etan Patz Suspect Raped His Niece, His Ex-Wife Told FBI, Sources Say

By DNAinfo Staff on April 21, 2012 4:02pm

Othniel Miller, who used to own a woodworking shop at the Prince Street building where investigators are searching for the remains of Etan Patz.
Othniel Miller, who used to own a woodworking shop at the Prince Street building where investigators are searching for the remains of Etan Patz.
View Full Caption
Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

By Murray Weiss and Paul Lomax

DNAinfo

MANHATTAN - As investigators searching for the remains of Etan Patz finished removing the concrete floor of a SoHo basement, a report surfaced that the prime suspect, Othniel Miller, was accused of raping his 10-year-old niece, source said.

Miller was using the basement of 127 Prince St. as a workshop in 1979, when 6-year-old Etan disapppeared as he walked alone to the bus stop for the first time.

A few years after that, he allegedly raped his 10-year-old niece, his ex-wife told FBI agents recently, forming partof the basis for obtaining a search warrant for the excavation, sources said.

Miller's wife told agents she left him over the allegations, sources said.

FBI investigators have yet to track down the niece to confirm the story, sources said.

Miller's lawyer, Michael Farkas, said he had heard the allegation for the first time on Saturday and couldn't comment.

The allegation was first reported in the New York Post.

Meanwhile, the entire basement floor of 127 Prince St. has been removed and the painstaking process of sifting through the underlying dirt for evidence is beginning.

"All the concrete is out. Next we're going to comb through all of the dirt for clues. It's a very meticulous process," FBI Special Agent Timothy Flannelly told DNAinfo. "We're cautiously optimistic about this search."

Smith said 30 to 40 agents are working on the joint FBI-NYPD investigation.

Locals too are anxious about a possible denouement in the long cold case.

 "I've been following this story for thirty (30) years," said  PR consultant Bill Dobbs, who lives nearby.  "Everyone in the neighborhood is hoping for a resolution to this case. It's still creepy after all these years as it's so close to home."

Etan Patz, 6, went missing in SoHo in 1979.
Etan Patz, 6, went missing in SoHo in 1979.
View Full Caption
Stanley K. Patz
The original missing child poster for Etan Patz, who disappeared from his SoHo neighborhood in 1979.
The original missing child poster for Etan Patz, who disappeared from his SoHo neighborhood in 1979.
View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Ben Fractenberg

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement