BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Nearly three years after being charged with a murder that happened more than 1,000 miles away decades ago, an inmate from the Alabama jail has been sent to Boston to face prosecutors.
Steven Fike, 62, was arrested by Boston Police Department officers on Wednesday, charging him with murder and rape in the murder of Wendy Danserau. She was found dead at the Diplomat Hotel in Boston in 1980, according to the department. Officers arrested Fike at Elmore Correctional Institution, where he has been serving a life sentence since 1982 after he was convicted of murdering Patricia Ann Culpa, a 20-year-old dancer at Sammy’s Go-Go Lounge.
In December 2019, a grand jury in Suffolk County, Massachusetts indicted Fike in Danserau’s death, charging him with rape and murder. In a statement sent by the Suffolk County Prosecutor’s Office, Fike was identified as a suspect under the Suffolk Unsolved Homicide Project, which linked DNA found in Danserau’s murder to Fike.
“We may not be able to provide every family with the answers we have found for Ms. Dansereau’s loved ones, but we can let every homicide survivor know that we remember their loved one and remain committed to resolving their murder,” he added. District Attorney Rachel Rollins said at the time. “We will continue to work on their behalf. And we will not rest. There is no statute of limitations for murder.”
In an article published in the Boston Globe shortly after Danserau’s death, her family described the young mother who grew up in foster care and led a troubled life that included drug addiction, prostitution and run-ins with the law.
“It was wrong to be dragged around,” Danserau’s sister Brenda Haslam told The Globe. “She would run away when she was unhappy with the foster home. It is then that the children turn to prostitution.
At the time of his arrest for the Culpa murder, Alabama media called Fike a “22-year-old drifter” who often hitchhiked to attend Crimson Tide football games.
No one from the Suffolk County prosecutor’s office could be reached to explain the discrepancy between Fike’s indictment and his extradition out of Alabama.
Steven Fike is set to face trial in Suffolk Superior Court.