Dickie Anderson Jr. was seen with Renee Pellegrino on June 25, 1997, the night she was killed and his DNA was at the seen of her murder, lawyers said in court on Wednesday.
Anderson, 40, of New London, was arrested on Tuesday and charged with Pellegrino's murder based on an investigation by the Southeastern Connecticut Cold Case Unit, according to police.
Pellegrino was a Phi Beta Kappa scholar and law school graduate who turned to prostitution to support her crack addiction, according to a story in The Day of New London a day after her death. Pellegrino, who was 41 when she died, had been released from prison the day before she was killed.
Anderson, a father of three, appeared in court on Wednesday, accused of her slaying. He has a violent past, prosecutors said, and has been convicted on five assaults and one third-degree strangulation.
Anderson’s lawyer asked that bail be set at $0, but the judge kept it at $2.5 million and said he is a flight risk and a public safety threat.
Anderson is due back in court June 16.