Two arrested for 1988 murder of Miriam Rice

George Kearney (left) and Barbara Brewster (Photos supplied/St. Joseph County Metro Homicide Unit)

Two arrests have been made in a 30 year murder case in South Bend.

76-year-old George Kearney was arrested in St. Joseph County and 56-year-old Barbara Brewster was tracked down in Alabama, both charged for their roles in the murder of Miriam Rice in 1988.

County Metro Homicide Unit commander Tim Corbett says Rice, 28-years-old at the time, was found dead in the Pinhook Lagoon five days after she went missing in June 1988.

She was out walking her dog and trying to get exercise while 4.5 months pregnant when she was attacked and murdered. Her dog was found hiding under a car on Riverside Drive a day after she went missing.

An autopsy determined she died of multiple skull fractures.

A break came in March 2016 when Kearney himself spoke with investigators while in prison on an unrelated matter. He had been in prison for about 27 years and told investigators he had been getting letters from Brewster talking about his involvement in Rice’s killing. Kearney tried to pin it all on Brewster, according to court documents.

The South Bend Tribune has more information on what led to Rice’s death.

During the press conference, Corbett says he and others drove down to Alabama to help arrest Brewster. Kearney is already in custody at St. Joseph County Jail. Both each face a single count of murder.