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Ex-Corrections Officer Arraigned For 1988 Murder Of 11-Year-Old Girl, Who Was Stabbed And Run Over By A Train

Marvin “Skip” McClendon Jr is being held without bail for the murder of Melissa Ann Tremblay.

By Gina Tron
Ex-Corrections Officer Arraigned For Girl's 1988 Murder

A former corrections officer from New England has been formally arraigned in connection with the 1988 murder of an 11-year-old girl.

Marvin “Skip” McClendon Jr., 74, was arrested last month in Alabama in connection with the heinous murder of Melissa Ann Tremblay, the Essex County District Attorney’s Office stated.

He appeared in court on Friday in Lawrence District Court where he pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder, Mass Live reports. During that arraignment, he was ordered held without bail. His next court appearance is scheduled for June 17, during which he will also undergo a dangerousness hearing, NBC Boston reports.

McClendon is accused of stabbing the New Hampshire girl to death before leaving her body on a train track in the Boston and Maine Railway Yard in Lawrence, according to the Essex County District Attorney’s Office. After she was stabbed, her body was run over by a train, Boston.com reports.

Marvin C. McClendon Jr. stands in the prisoner's dock

The district attorney’s office said that “evidence recovered from the victim’s body was instrumental in solving the case.” They also noted that McClendon had been a person of interest for “a period of time.”

A handout photo of Melissa Tremblay

The child's family appeared surprised by the arrest and arraignment.

“We never thought that after 33 1/2 years we would finally see someone arrested and facing a judge,” Tremblay’s remaining family members said in a statement, Boston.com reports. “While we know there are many more steps we are very confident that the District Attorney’s office will be just as vigilant in prosecuting this case as the detectives have been for all these years in finding Marvin McClendon.”

In the family’s statement, they credited DNA for helping to solve the case.

“The fact that technology has advanced and they were able to follow DNA evidence to find this man has brought us great joy,” the family stated. “Our family looks forward to seeing this case go forward to the grand jury for indictment and then onto the Superior court to see justice finally served.”  

McClendon used to work as a corrections officer for the state of Massachusetts. It’s not clear if he was working in that capacity in 1988 when he lived in Chelmsford, Massachusetts.

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