By Ray O’Hanlon
Thirteen years after his daughter was murdered in California, a Belfast man and his family are thankful that the man found guilty of the crime has been sent to prison.
David Noble, a retired printer for the San Francisco Chronicle, never accepted that the prime suspect in his daughter Kathleen’s death was living free in Virginia. So he asked that the investigation be reopened. It was, and the result was a trial and guilty verdict.
Noble was present in San Mateo County Superior Court at the recent climax of that trial to give evidence of the hurt caused to his family. He told the court that he would never have the joy of seeing his daughter get married and starting her own family.
Sentencing followed the conviction by a jury of Mark Hensley, a 32-year-old ballet teacher who was a co-worker of 23-year-old Kathleen Noble and shared a house with her.
Hensley was convicted of murdering Noble in her car in East Alto, Calif., in February 1989. He was sentenced to 25 years to life.
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Hensley might still be free but for a letter David Noble wrote on the 10th anniversary of his daughter’s death. Noble, who started his career in printing with the Belfast Telegraph, wrote to the sheriff in San Mateo requesting that the 1989 killing of his daughter be reexamined.