ANAHEIM, Calif. (April 30, 2021) – More than 41 years after 79-year-old Viola Hagenkord was found sexually assaulted and deceased in her Anaheim apartment, 64-year-old Andre William Lepere of Alamogordo, New Mexico, has been arrested and charged with her murder.
On February 18, 1980, Anaheim police officers responded to Hagenkord’s apartment in the 2500 block of W. Winston Road after a neighbor entered her apartment and found her dead.
Neighbors became concerned when they hadn’t seen Hagenkord for two days, which was unusual because she was well known throughout her apartment complex community. Homicide detectives investigated the case extensively and collected valuable evidence, but the case went cold.
Over the course of the following decades, other homicide detectives revisited the case, but no suspects were identified. In September 2020, cold case homicide detectives once again began to investigate Hagenkord’s murder, and collaborated with the Orange County Crime Lab and the FBI’s Orange County Violent Crime Task Force.
As a result of these efforts, Lepere was identified as a suspect. On April 28, 2021, Anaheim homicide detectives went to Alamogordo, New Mexico, and worked with the New Mexico State Police, Otero County Sheriff’s Department, Otero County District Attorney’s Office and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office to locate and arrest Lepere for Hagenkord’s murder.
The New Mexico State Police served a search warrant at Lepere’s residence in the 2000 block of Amber Skies Avenue and took Lepere into custody without incident.