Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
March 19, 2010
Susan Kang Schroeder
INDIANAPOLIS MAN LINKED THROUGH DNA SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDERING 20-YEAR-OLD SINGLE MOTHER IN 1985
SANTA ANA – An Indianapolis man was sentenced today to 25 years to life in state prison for the cold-case murder of a 20-year-old single mother in her Anaheim apartment in 1985 after being linked through DNA. Wendell Patrick Lemond, 51, Indianapolis, IN, was found guilty by a jury July 21, 2009, of one felony count of first degree murder.
In 1985, Lemond worked with 20-year-old single mother Catherine Tameny at an Anaheim business, Archive. Early in the morning on Aug. 5, 1985, Lemond murdered the victim in her Anaheim home. The defendant sexually assaulted Tameny, who was found with her shirt pulled up to her upper torso and naked from the waist down. Lemond wrapped a clock cord around Tameny’s neck, bound the hands of Tameny’s 2-year-old son, and left the toddler in the living room. Lemond then fled the scene. The victim was found later that morning by her mother and step-father.
The defendant was a suspect from the beginning of the case, but there was insufficient evidence to charge him at that time. Several months after the murder, Lemond moved to Idaho, and later to Indiana.
DNA evidence, including a swab taken off the victim’s breast, was collected from the crime scene, but the case went unsolved. In 2007, Lemond’s DNA was matched to the murder of Tameny using technology that did not exist in 1985. The defendant, who was living in Indiana, was extradited Aug. 30, 2007, to faces charges in Orange County.
During the sentencing today, four of Tameny’s family members gave victim impact statements to the court including her mother, sister, brother, and son. The family explained that Lemond took their daughter, sister, and mother, and has been out living his live for the past 22 years while they struggled to live without Tameny. The victim’s son, Nick Medina, explained that Lemond deprived him of growing up with a mother.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Howard Gundy of the Homicide Unit prosecuted this case.