BANGOR, Maine — The suspect arrested Wednesday by warrant in connection to a 33-year-old murder case in Connecticut is a registered sex offender in Maine.
Born in the same city in which the murder took place, Norwalk – and now a resident of Coboro Road in Stetson, Maine – the affidavit states Marc Karun was convicted in 1989 of sexual assault in Norwalk Superior Court. He spent at least 10 years behind bars, and was issued to serve five years probation.
According to documents, Karun had two complaints of sexual offender activity on Sept. 19 and 22, 2017. It wasn't clear if he was in Maine at the time.
The warrant accuses Karun of being connected to the September 1986 murder of 11-year-old Kathleen Flynn in Norwalk, Connecticut.
Bail for Karun was listed within the affidavit as being set at $5 million, however, police said Thursday he'd be held without bail until a hearing Friday.
1986 MURDER INVESTIGATION
The affidavit provides a timeline of law enforcement's investigation into the Sept. 23, 1986 murder. Six months prior, Karun, who lived within two miles of the school, was charged with sexual assault and kidnapping in a separate case.
Omitting graphic details, here's a synopsis:
Prior to Flynn Death Investigation
- Jan. 27, 1986: Marc Karun is arrested on charges of sexual assault first degree and kidnapping first degree; case involves 18-year-old woman
- Sept. 3, 1986: Charges in January case substituted down to sexual assault fourth degree, "since the victim (redacted) had dated Karun for a few months sometime after the arrest and did not wish to testify against [him]"
- Karun receives six-month executed sentence, two years probation
Flynn Reported Missing, Body Found
- Sept. 23, 1986, 3:30 PM: Flynn does not return home from school around
- 5:12 PM: Flynn's mother reports her daughter missing to police
- Police search area near Ponus Ridge Middle School where Flynn regularly walked home through, a paved footpath behind tennis courts on school property that exits onto Hunters Lane with a wooded area nearby
- Sept. 24, 1986, 2 AM: Officer finds duffel bag in woods containing school book bearing Flynn's name; later find sneakers, socks
- 3:35 AM: Officer finds body 158 feet off footpath
- 4:40 AM: Assistant medical examiner arrives on scene
- 8:30 AM: Chief medical examiner arrives on scene
- 9:30 AM: Flynn's father positively identifies
- 12:15 PM: Autopsy conducted; cause of death listed as asphyxia due to ligature strangulation and manner of death ruled a homicide
- Evening news reports lead to numerous tips from public of suspicious persons and suspicious vehicles spotted near school at dismissal time
Public Reports Numerous Leads
- Sept. 26, 1986: Norwalk resident tells detective she was driving south on Ponus Avenue at time of school dismissal when an early 1970s, medium green color vehicle with a New York license plate occupied by three male teenagers came speeding down the footpath from the Ponus Ridge Middle School that exits onto Ponus Avenue and almost struck her vehicle as they entered Ponus Avenue; says driver had dirty blonde hair, white T-shirt
- Sept. 27, 1986: Woman tells detective she was driving north, not south, on Ponus Avenue, and observed the licence plate through her rearview mirror
- Knowing that Karun had just previously been charged with sexual assault (see Prior to Death Investigation) and drove an older green color vehicle, detective drives woman to Karun's residence to view his car, which was a 1977 Buick four-door with Connecticut plates; woman says isn't car she saw
- While being driven home, woman points out to detective a 1970 Chevrolet medium-green color she apparently saw that Friday
Police Interview Karun, Part 1
- Oct. 9, 1986, 3 PM: Detective goes to Princess Pine Road to meet with Karun, who exits his home; Karun tells detective "he was at the Ponus Ridge Middle School on Friday, Sept. 19, 1986, around 3 p.m. to see some teachers," "went to the library and spoke with the school librarian" and "walked on the wooden path that led to Hunters Lane"
- Karun tells detective he believes on Sept. 23 "he was on Connecticut Avenue looking for work," leaving around 8:30 a.m. and returning home at 11:30 a.m., going to Wendy's and "maybe" McDonald's "but never [speaking] with a store or restaurant owner because he really didn't want to find a job," citing a "half-hearted" attempt due to parents' pressure; asks to not mention to his parents
- When asked if he'd be willing to take a polygraph test, Karun tells detective he'd have to consult with his attorney, who he says called him a few days after the homicide and told him police may come to his home to question
- Karun tells detective "he did not know the victim and that he did not commit the crime"
- Detective notes Karun's demeanor as "cooperative but very nervous and apprehensive," and says he smoked three cigarettes during the interview
Detectives Conduct Further Interviews
- Oct. 10, 1986: Detectives interview pair of two- and five-year librarians of Ponus Ridge Middle School, both of which tell them they do not know a past student by Karun's name; also say that on Sept. 19 they were at work until 3 and 4 p.m., don't recall any man fitting Karun's description entering
- Detectives interview hall monitor who tells them that on Sept. 19 she entered the library at 2:50 p.m. for 10 minutes and does not recall any person fitting Karun's description, nor did she recognize the name
- Oct. 10, 1986, 2:45 PM: School's full staff minus one assembles, is asked if they know and are shown a photo of Karun; most do not know him; several recall him as past student and say "he had many serious problems"
Police Interview Karun, Part 2
- Oct. 28, 1986: Detectives visit Karun, now living at an apartment on West Cedar Street, and ask him to provide name of librarian he spoke with Sept. 19, to which he states "he did not know the name, wasn't sure, and that he did not wish to speak with police" and refers to his attorney
- Karun admits "he did not go to the school and visit the librarian and that she was sitting behind a desk"
Subsequent Sexual Assault Reports
- April 1988: Karun is arrested by Derby, Connecticut, police on charges of kidnapping first degree, sexual assault first degree; case involves 16-year-old
- May 15, 1988: Woman reports being sexually assaulted by man who entered apartment without forced entry; was Karun's former apartment; Karun is identified through DNA 20 years later on March 26, 2018, as suspect
- May 23, 1988: Karun is arrested by Connecticut state police on charges of unlawful restraint first degree, weapons in a motor vehicle and threatening; accused of picking up 27-year-old woman along side of road, who after allegedly being told to strip is able to steer vehicle off road and get help
- June 17, 1988, 6:44 AM: Sexual assault reported on Ponus Ridge Road in New Cannan; 41-year-old woman tells police she was walking on road when young man crouching in driveway stood up, asked her what road she was on, later held her with knife in hand; couple walking diverts suspect
- Suspect's vehicle description matches car owned by Kuran's girlfriend
- 8:45 AM: Police interview Karun at Ingalis Avenue residence; girlfriend's car in driveway has plate removed; tells police "he had been out the night before and had arrived home at 5 a.m.," denies involvement in incident
- Inside apartment police find 146 pornographic photos, mail order catalog, letter describing a sexual assault, pair of black nylons
- Victim identifies Karun as suspect
- Karun arrested, charged with kidnapping second degree, criminal attempt at sexual assault first degree, possession of dangerous weapon
DNA Collected in Maine
- Sept. 27, 2017: Following years of evidence collection and cross-referencing, Connecticut judge approves warrant that would allow Maine State Police to collect DNA sample from Karun
- Oct. 3, 2017, AM: Maine State Police troopers serve warrant, collect from Karun buccal swabs for DNA samples
- After refusing to speak with a detective, the affidavit states Karun, as he was walking away, said out loud, "my life just keeps getting better"
- One of the main reasons for sample collection, as noted in affidavit, "was for the direct comparison to the fingernail scrapings [from Flynn]"
Forensic Evidence Explanation
In the arrest warrant, investigators detail their forensic evidence:
"The forensic evidence tested in this investigation has included Marc Karun through the use of mitochondrial DNA for the male Caucasian pubic hair fragment recovered from the lower abdominal area of Kathleen Flynn in a sexual assault murder," it states. "Identified Marc Karun in the form of a CODIS Hit in the Connecticut offender database from a profile developed from the left middle fingernail scraping of Flynn with the knowledge from autopsy reports and photographs that Kathleen Flynn struggled with her assailant in an effort to free herself of the ligature around her neck. More recent DNA testing of the fingernail scraping from the left thumb found that Karun could not be eliminated as the source due to low likelihood ratios and was inconclusive but the same tests were able to eliminate two persons of interest these same DNA profiles."