On May 29, 1984, 14-year-old Christy Brittingham was found, nude and strangled, in a wooded area 300 yards from her apartment complex in Ellicott City, Maryland.
Two days later, police arrested one of her neighbors, 21-year-old David Snyder, on a charge of first-degree murder, locking him up without bond. Snyder admitted speaking with Brittingham, near the apartment house pool, on the day she disappeared, but he insisted that he did not see her after five o'clock.
A witness challenged Snyder's statement, claiming he had seen the man and girl together, walking toward the woods, around 5:30. At the time of his arrest, Snyder was already under indictment for breaking into a dairy store at the complex; he was free on bail when Christy disappeared, May 24.
In addition to that murder, he was suspected in the Baltimore strangling of 17-year-old Deborah Boone, in 1983, and two more killings in his hometown Tampa, Florida. One Tampa victim , 14-year-old Carla Hanovan, was found strangled in a suburban field, in November 1982. A month later, victim Seandra Hogan, age 16, was found northeast of town.
Snyder had been questioned as a suspect in both cases, admitting his acquaintance with the girls, but he was freed for lack of evidence. On July 19, 1984, Maryland charged Snyder with two counts of first-degree rape, plus one count of assault and battery, in new cases involving victims who survived.
Pleading guilty to the Brittingham murder on April 3, 1985, Snyder received a sentence of life imprisonment on May 29 of that year.
Michael Newton - An Encyclopedia
of Modern Serial Killers - Hunting Humans
SEX: M RACE: W TYPE: TN MOTIVE:
MO: Rape-slayer of girls age
DISPOSITION: Life sentence on one
count in Md., 1985.